Rautahat district is in the southern plain in the mid of Nepal. It lies at the foot of the Churiya hill where majorities of people are under the poverty line. The district possesses a situation where poorest and marginalized as well as a disadvantageous community called Vulnerable Economically Excluded & Deprived (VEED) live their lives in conflict and having hand to mouth problems since decade-long people of Rautahat have not been feeling peace and harmony. Due to extortion, kidnappings and coldblooded murders particularly in the Rautahat, all of which have not only severely hampered development activities and wasted development space but also made the lives of the poor people living in the Rautahat even more miserable. Massive youth unemployment in the Rautahat has fueled the armed groups and lawlessness in general. It's making everyday life extremely difficult and increasing people’s vulnerabilities, frustrations, and decreasing people’s confidence in the state or public institutions and development actors.
In this scenario, the emphasis has to be on providing both quick results as peace dividends as well as long-term solutions to problems of unemployment, underemployment, economic recovery, and social cohesion. Against this backdrop, Rural Development Centre (RDC) Nepal successfully implemented Livelihood Recovery for Peace (LRP) Project in Rautahat district with the support of UNDP from October 2011 to September 2016. In the first phase, the program launched with its all component to 33 VDCs of Rautahat and after that selected 32 VDC of the second cluster.
The overall objective of the project is to contribute to restoring the foundations for sustainable development by strengthening the capacities of communities and local institutions to achieve sustained livelihood recovery and peacebuilding.
65 VDCs of Rautahat district.
Vulnerable Economically Excluded & Deprived (VEED) individuals, households and communities with a particular focus on women, youth, conflict-affected, poor and historically excluded groups.
Components of LRP
- Social Mobilization
- Infrastructure development
- Income Generating Activities (IGA)
- Social Inclusion and Women Empowerment
- Institutional capacity building in Peace and Livelihood
- A total of 96 Community Groups (CG) have been functioning as self-governing organizations in the programme implemented 32 VDCs of Rautahat District. Each CG had covered the range of 23-31 households. A total of 2,726 households belonging from 3 different categories; ultra-poor 2,566, poor 141 and better off 19.
- In 96 Community Groups (CG), the participation of women which was 99% could be said almost cent percent. Out of 2,726 members, females were 2,708 and males were 18. The ethnicity compositions of all CG members are as follows:
- Tarai Dalits - 1501
- Tarai Janajat i- 284
- Terai Brahmin Chhetri (BC) – 23
- Other Madhesi - 671
- Muslims - 247
- Community Groups (CG) got knowledge on the importance of drinking water and the methods of cleaning water.
- Community Groups (CG) got knowledge about management of the garbage in domestic level.
- The Community Groups (CG) are strengthened and are now acting as potent organizations for development and they are helping people within the villages to work together for community improvement initiatives.
- The participants learned the skill of data collection, success story writing, good minute writing & so on.
- Most of the illiterate Community Groups (CG) members started to write their names and introduce themselves.
- Community Groups (CG) members started to raise their voice for their rights, participation, representation, and access to assets & information is increasing.
- Vulnerable Economically Excluded and Deprived (VEED) groups got knowledge about how to face with issues & challenges in their fields.
- Hygiene promotion is the burning issue for Vulnerable Economically Excluded and Deprived (VEED) groups so the programme helped Peace and Livelihood Facilitator (PAL) to sensitize Vulnerable Economically Excluded and Deprived (VEED) groups about the importance of hygiene promotion & implement these things in their life.
- There is a pivotal role in the project in the community level to change Vulnerable Economically Excluded & Deprived (VEED) group's attitude. Previously who couldn’t even introduce themselves, now they are starting to write their name & raising voice for their rights in concerned agencies, presentation, and representation of CG members has been increased.
- Hygiene promotion is the burning issue for VEED groups so the training helped them to develop their capacity & facilitation skills about the importance of hygiene promotion & implement these things in their life.
Challenges & Areas to Improve
- Huge numbers of poor from the target areas could not be got benefited from the programme.
- Increase Community Group (CG) number or cover remaining poverty pockets of the district.
- Lunch infra project to remaining Community Groups (CG).
The project attained a positive impact in the communities. The project succeeded in reducing the gap and able to establish peace and enhance the skills of people called Vulnerable Economically Excluded & Deprived (VEED) groups to improve their livelihood by providing different kinds of training, small infrastructure development, energy-related activities, women empowerment and through IGA support.