Guddi Bai: Back to The Future - Raghogarh(MP)

Guddi Bai from village Sarsahela in Raghogarh, Madhya Pradesh, had five acres of land which wasn’t of much use to her because she didn’t have the equipments to irrigate it. Arranging money to buy them seemed like an impossible proposition because of the impoverished conditions in her family. In her village, most able workers spend their time in working for local contractors in part-time and irregular assignments, and that was her reality too. In a perpetual financial crisis, the villagers had to take help of money lenders, and this worsened their situation.

The worst sufferers were the women of the village, who had the duel responsibility of taking care of the family as well as earn money to keep their kitchens running. ACM GIDF understood their predicament, and took efforts to bring them under the umbrella of project SAKHI to form an SHG so that they can pool their resources and work together towards earning better livelihoods. Guddi Bai joined this SHG, along with 9 other village women, and soon became the decision maker of the pack due to her latent leadership qualities.

Guddi Devi has now bought an engine to irrigate her lands, aided by a loan from the SHG. Even while her repayments have just begun, she has started reaping benefits. This year she planted wheat in her fields. Her importance in her family has also undergone a quantum shift, as she is now earning more than any other member in her family. More than any thing else, she is happy, and have now decided to share her happiness with other women in her neighborhood, bringing them under the SHG fold.

Rani’s husband was operated upon successfully. He was sorry as well as ashamed that his life was saved by the same SHG for which he always cursed his wife. For him, it was a lesson learnt – he now has promised to become an active supporter of the SHG movement and encourage his fellow men in the village to do the same.