Finding Innovative Solutions for Poverty Alleviation in India

Finding Innovative Solutions for Poverty Alleviation in India
The 3rd North India conference on “Finding Innovative Solutions for Poverty Alleviation in India” was organized on February 14, 2014 by IDCA in collaboration with IIIM. The event commenced with saraswati vandana followed by lighting of the lamp.  Dr. Ashok Gupta, Director IIIM  welcomed the dignitaries and participants and told that it is very crucial to organize such conferences and generating awareness among youth to discharge their responsibilities keeping in view social objectives.
 Dr. Mohan Jain, Trustee and Founder President, IDCA, in his address highlighted the deep requirement of taking strong measures to alleviate poverty. He told that time has come where social inequalities should have no space and everybody should join hands together to fight with the problem of ‘poverty’. He gave a brief presentation on IDCA, highlighting the major contribution of IDCA and how it promotes networking, collaboration, learning, giving, and volunteering for poverty eradication and climate change Mitigation/Adaption in India through their various meetings in the US and India.
The Chief Guest of the conference was Shri Satyadev Bareth, Director, Development Resources .In his speech he talked about the dream of Mahatma Gandhi of a poverty free India. He quoted sayings of Gandhiji to convey that one needs to fight with self to win the battle of greed. He told that resources on the earth are just enough to make people satisfied but by no means can resources meet the greed of the people.
The key note was presented by Prashant Pal, Delhi Lead - Operation Excellence, Accenture. He started his presentation by initially asking some questions from the participants and taking very simple examples of everybody’s immediate life. He is a core team member of “Pure” which is an NGO, established with the intent of enlightening the lives of less privileged. He also talked about his personal experience of helping sufferers in massive damage of Uttarakhand due to floods. He emphasized on social citizenship and helping poor with an objective of uplifting their standards.
In Panel discussion I, the theme was Water, Climate change and health. The speakers were Mr. Azeem Ur Rehman, General Manager, Bhoruka Charitable Trust, Mr. Dhananjay Sahay, Director, Policy and Research, CECOEDECON, Jaipur and Mr.Sameer Chaturvedi,CEO, Jaipur Rugs Foundation. Mr. Azeem Ur Rehman talked about the functioning of the trust and how it is dedicated to socio-economic transformation of rural and remote areas of India, especially the weaker and socially underprivileged groups, through physical, social, cultural and economic development of rural population, groups and institutions. Mr. Dhananjay Sahay talked about how for over three decades the organization has worked towards promoting inclusion, making communities resilient, empowering women, children, farmers and others at the society's margins through its   innovative interventions ranging from Natural Resource Management, Sustainable Rural Livelihoods, Climate Change etc. Mr. Sameer had communicated that Jaipur Rugs Foundation works on the principle of constantly improving the lives of marginalized people. In his presentation he informed about the practices adopted by Jaipur Rugs to upgrade the living standards of local artisans. He also put forth the practical difficulties which usually come in the way with such business models. The panel – 1 concluded after the deep discussion amongst the panelists..
In Panel discussion II the speakers were invited to talk on the theme Education and Livelihood. Ms. Swati Bhardwaj, State manager, Educate Girls started with her presentation and talked about their significant contribution towards girls’ education and told that this is the most suitable way of fighting with the problem of poverty. Ms. Amreen Ahmed, Chief Coordinator, Pravah – Jaipur Initiatives told that the attempts of  Pravah are with the belief that instead of ‘curing’ in the aftermath of social conflicts, a positive engagement of youth is desired. To incorporate long term changes therefore it is imperative to inculcate relevant values, attitudes and skills in the youth. Mr.Varun Sharma, programme coordinator, Aravali, communicated that the NGO intends to ensure that there are an increased number of effective voluntary organisations working closely with marginalized communities in every district of Rajasthan and that an enabling environment is developed within which the government and these organisations can form effective partnerships.  He stressed on ensuring that the benefits of development reach the poor in particular and the people in general. Queries were being satisfied followed by a small break.
The concluding session had presentations of the students of TCIIIM on ‘Social Entrepreneurship’. The students presented the work that they undertook in form of training in NGOs. Six teams came forward with the presentation in the social sector and shared their work, experiences and real life learnings. The presentations were in the form of competition and top three teams were given cash prizes from IDCA of Rs.6000, Rs.4000, and Rs.2000 respectively. Dignitaries from the corporate world judged the presentations and appreciated the work done and suggested the students to get involved in such training programmes so as to bridge the gap between theoretical learnings and practical issues.
The session concluded with conference report by Dr. Mohan Jain who encouraged the participants to be innovative and work with dedication towards poverty alleviation.

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