Whatever efforts we make to improve the living conditions of poor and neglected families in rural areas, we must link them with income generation to achieve sustainable development.
Economic development and escape from poverty are the most important goals for poor communities. The majority of ASSIST’s target groups consist of daily wage labourers, marginal farmers and artisans. Many labourers depend on agricultural seasonal work in an area where rainfall is decreasing year by year.
To break the cycle of dependence on agriculture and menial jobs, ASSIST aims to improve the economic status of poor communities by identifying sustainable income sources and providing corresponding skill training.
While sustainable poverty reduction is inherently linked to local economic growth, it also depends on the creation of responsive and accountable public institutions that bring marginalised communities into the governance process.
To achieve this, ASSIST promotes People’s Organisations and motivates them to take up viable income generation activities for their community. Optimizing the use of land, water and human resources is the best way to improve people’s economic status.
Economic development activities include measures to promote sustainable farming and increase production, profitable livestock rearing and skill upgrading for people to market their products and manage their income generating activities.
Adolescents receive vocational training in gainful professions like tailoring and fashion design, computer applications, masonry, motor mechanics and leather working.
Loans from Mutually Aided Cooperative Thrift and Credit Societies (MACTS), managed by People’s Organisations, enable them to set up micro-enterprises like work units and petty shops. With this comprehensive approach, ASSIST has been helping thousands of families to escape poverty and to build a sustainable future.