Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Making a splash for revitalising water bodies

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Promoting cooperation experience sharing in the management of water resources has been the aim of the Jalagam initiative. This week for our weekly column of Community Wise, The Pioneer brings a detailed overview of the initiative and its workshops.
SHIKHA DUGGAL
The inclusion of community adaptation and sustenance processes in the nexus of water and climate change is made possible by Jalagam, a noteworthy advancement. The goal of the workshop series was to promote cooperation and experience-sharing in the management of water resources while highlighting regional differences in methods and issues among the states of Telangana, and more.
More than 5,00,000 square feet of ponds and water bodies have been revitalised through projects with the S M Sehgal Foundation for watershed improvement, and more than 35 crore liters of rainwater have been collected. Approximately 14,000 marginal and small farmers have benefited from this.
The movement’s third part of the Jalagam workshop, which focuses on experience sharing and capacity building, was successfully held in Hyderabad recently. “The dialogue sessions focused on rural interaction with sarpanches, Jalagam, brings together subject matter specialists from civil society, relevant government ministries, and rural communities with farmers, sarpanches, and grassroots water-saving measures. In order to organise Jalagam, which focuses on encouraging community-driven adaptation and sustainability in the face of water and climate change challenges, teamwork has been essential. Critical conversations on important subjects including bridging the gaps between policy and practice, the powerful role of institutions, and active community participation have been enabled by these workshops,” shared Gaurav Mehta, head of marketing, Corporate Communications and CSR of DCB Bank.
The workshops functioned as forums for experts and local communities to collaborate and share information. The well-being and food security of India heavily depend on groundwater and watershed development. Thousands of farmers have benefited from their CSR programs in rural communities, which assist recipients in adopting better farming practices to conserve water, preserve soil, improve biodiversity, and adapt to climate change challenges.
“The goal is to add to a thorough white paper that will encourage more extensive information exchange and possibly have a larger impact on policy. These kinds of programs are essential to creating resilient communities that can successfully address the urgent problems of climate change and water scarcity, opening the door to a more sustainable future. In order to positively benefit marginal and small farmers, DCB Bank has implemented successful sustainable livelihood programs in collaboration with communities and specialists throughout India. A sizable number of farmers with an average land holding size of 1.5 acres or less are marginal and small farmers. “Contribute to Society” is one of the bank’s core beliefs. Through the implementation of corporate social responsibility projects for marginalized communities, the bank translates this value into reality. The recipient communities’ support for the CSR projects is matched by the experience of non-governmental organizations with expertise in a variety of thrust areas, including waste management, recycling, carbon sequestration, biodiversity enhancement, watershed and groundwater development, and renewable energy,” added Gaurav.
There is also a Miyawaki technique that involves planting trees in a much denser cluster—roughly three to four seedlings per square meter—as well as preparing the soil and adding organic nutrients. The Miyawaki technique has been used in their CSR initiatives. These programs reduced urban noise pollution and dust pollution while establishing green spaces.  The bank plants one lakh native tree species a year with the help of community volunteers in cities, non-governmental organizations, and institutions. Through the promotion of environmental knowledge and community involvement, this not only improved biodiversity and environmental sustainability, but it also helped to create sustainable livelihoods. The accomplishment of these programs demonstrates the bank’s dedication to raising living standards and boosting GDP.
“They work with local rural and urban communities to foster a shared sense of responsibility. We implement programmes on sustainable livelihood to address evolving challenges associated with water, climate change, and sustainable livelihoods for the long term. Through initiatives like the Jalagam project, the bank aspires to spread awareness about climate change resilience and advocate for the sustainable management of water resources. These concerted efforts are key to creating a sustainable, inclusive future where communities are empowered and environmental challenges are suitably  addressed.”
The Jalagam workshop series has considerably improved water resource management methods in the Telangana region by promoting the exchange of knowledge and experiences among various regions. Cross-regional learning makes it easier to identify flexible solutions and gain a greater understanding of a variety of difficulties. The long-term effects on water bodies and farmers’ livelihoods are the goal of DCB Bank and S M Sehgal Foundation’s association on watershed development projects. Taking a holistic approach, the initiatives concentrate on long-term approaches to water conservation, such as reviving ponds and other bodies of water and efficiently collecting rainfall.
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