Ground Operations

Projects and Programmes

Seeking Sustainable Solutions

The core focus of ACCESS is to deliver high impact on the ground through programs and projects being implemented in the field. ACCESS is fortunate to be supported by a large number of stakeholders for implementing diverse programs on the ground. To ensure that ACCESS programmes are not thematically scattered a sub sector approach has been adopted under which those sub sectors where a larger number of poor are engaged are identified for intervention. Although the key programmatic focus of ACCESS is supporting small and marginal farmers it is also implementing a few large nonfarm sector programmes. The core strategy within most ACCESS programmes is to organize the primary producers, help aggregate their subsistence level produce and integrate them in the value chain. ACCESS seeks to develop ‘inclusive value chains’ within which it helps the primary producers to accrue greater benefits from the value chain.

Current Running Projects :

ACCESS is developing a series of 3-D animation video content featuring an iconic superwoman character called BuddhiMoney who is a smart financial and business counselor for the community. BuddhiMoney is a youthful energetic woman, who is well educated, intelligent, amiable, urbane, and smart and appeals as an aspirational, iconic and friendly figure, lives within the community and comes to the rescue of anybody needing help and advice. ACCESS intends to build financial capabilities and impart financial awareness through creating short videos in a film based format through its Superwoman character BuddhiMoney.

By 2022, ACCESS plans to develop a repertoire of at least 25 BuddhiMoney videos which will cover a range of financial and business literacy themes. ACCESS also intends to disseminate BuddhiMoney films through leveraging partnerships with NGO’s, Small Finance Banks, Government, and other financial institutions.

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Project Name: Upscaling Enterprise: Taking off with BuddhiMoney
Project Location: Rajasthan
Supported by: Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth

In its first series, ACCESS has developed four films under the theme, Upscaling Enterprises, Taking off with BuddhiMoney to build financial awareness among jewelry artisans in Jaipur. The films have been developed on the following themes:

  1. Mobile Banking
  2. Informal to Formal through Udyog Aadhaar & Udyami Mitra
  3. Bookkeeping & Improving Financial Management
  4. Accelerating Business Growth through Internet

Project Name: Building Financial Capabilities with BuddhiMoney
Project Location: Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh
In partnership with HSBC India.

In the second series, two new films are being developed under the theme, Building Financial Capabilities with BuddhiMoney. The project intends to impart financial awareness in Tier III and Tier II cities on various advantages of using the ATM cum Debit Card with a focus on Awareness & Security and highlight the advantages of saving in a bank account and the attractive formal savings products. A

Project Name: Project Kirana
Project Location: Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, and Gujarat
Supported by: Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth

ACCESS is also underway in developing five films to impart business and financial management training for small Kirana shop owners across three cities in India

Location : Gurugram
Supported by :  Citi Foundation

With the support from Citi Foundation, ACCESS identified the traditional Chandu village, Gurugram for this innovative initiative to enable economic empowerment of women. Under this programme, women have been organized and made equity owners of Zing & Zest Pvt. Ltd. which has been engaged in making oat meal cookies, granola bars as also most palatable “ragi” and sorghum cookies for the health conscious discerning connoisseurs in the NCR.

  • ACCESS has organized 200 women into the Zing & Zest Pvt. Ltd, skilled them into baking modern day healthy snacks and savories through the help of master chefs at a state-of-the-art Resource Centre.
  • In a very short period, the Zing & Zest cookies have started to sell in several up-market stores like La Marche, Reliance Foods, Anna Maya, and are very popular among office goers.
  • Every quarter, the Zing & Zest Board of Directors, comprising mainly of these women meets to decide on new strategies, new recipes, new markets for their expansion plans.
  • The program not only strongly entails the elements of economic empowerment & women entrepreneurship but has also managed to gradually cut across all the areas of life of our women entrepreneurs. Encouraged by the success, ACCESS plans to replicate the idea to 15 other locations across the country and add another 3,000 women with the initiative.

Location :  Assam, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan
Supported by : Multiple partners (Government of Assam, SIDBI, HSBC)

Handloom industry is the largest cottage industry in the country with 3.5 million looms in India and contributing about 7 % to the country’s GDP. As a part of its 3rd Long Term Strategic Plan (2016 to 2021), given the agriculture distress all across the country, under the banner of Living Looms of India, ACCESS proposes to focus on revitalizing the handloom sector. During this Plan period, ACCESS proposes to adopt 20 handloom clusters across the country, and work with all the actors within the ecosystem – spinners, weavers, dyers, tailors. et al and through a clutch of integrated intertwined interventions, transform these clusters into dynamic economic microcosms.

  • With support from SIDBI, ACCESS has completed a successful intervention with 500 weavers in Bhagalpur. It is currently implementing a major programme in Majuli Island in ASSAM with 1000 weavers, supported by Govt. of Assam (Assam Livelihoods Mission) and in Maheshwar (Madhya Pradesh) and Kota (Rajasthan) with 600 weavers, supported by HSBC. In the next phase, ACCESS plans to start five more clusters in Odisha and West Bengal.
  • Revitalization of handloom clusters is essentially market-based, responding to the three critical challenges handloom clusters face across the board, viz. the need to adopt and integrate new technology, infusion of new designs and product diversification and high value market linkages
  • Once the products are developed, ACCESS teams on their own, in partnership with its specialised marketing agency Ode to Earth, as also through other market players seeks to link the products to high value markets
  • As a part of this plan, a process of establishing a pan India weaver owned company has also been initiated. The company will largely be owned by the weavers themselves, while also creating the possibility of co-investments from potential impact investors.
  • There have been early successes from these cluster interventions. While a few nationally renowned fashion designers have lined up with the programme, a few strategic market linkages have also been established. Living Looms of India is expected to be a well-known brand, representing the best in handlooms by 2021.

Project Name: Self-Reliance and Livelihoods for Refugees
Location: National Capital Region of Delhi
Supported by: United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)

Supported by UNHCR, the Self Reliance and Livelihoods for Refugees project improves the livelihoods of 2000 refugees from Afghanistan and Myanmar through skill and vocational training, business development and employability services. Through this project, ACCESS has been able to help UNHCR design special policies for sustainable livelihood interventions for the refugees. Interventions include:

  • Access to training and learning enabled including counseling & outreach activities, training on life skills and financial literacy skills
  • Access to Vocational Training including training on technical skills and functional literacy
  • Access to wage earning employment facilitated including providing placements and apprenticeship opportunities
  • Access to self-employment including trainings on entrepreneurship, facilitating set up of small businesses and providing market linkage opportunities

Project Name: Formation of Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs)
Location: Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, West Bengal
Supported by: Small Farmers’ Agribusiness Consortium (SFAC)

SFAC supports 14 programmes in four ACCESS programme states under the National Vegetable Initiative and National Pulses Initiative. Besides the need to improve agriculture productivity and strengthen the backward and forward linkages, partnership with SFAC has also provided the opportunity of organizing the farmers into Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs). The purpose of the project is to collectivize farmers, especially small producers, at various levels across several states, to foster technology penetration, improve productivity, enable improved access to inputs and services and increase farmer incomes, thereby strengthening their sustainable agriculture based livelihoods.

Project Name: Dharashakti
Location: Rajasthan
Supported by: Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY)

Given the key role played by ACCESS in incubating and strengthening Farmer Producer Organisations across India, ACCESS was entrusted with the responsibility of incubating and strengthening 40 FPOs across 40 blocks in 16 districts of Rajasthan under the Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana, Department of Agriculture,
Government of Rajasthan. The programme titled “DharaShakti” will cover 40,000 small and marginal farmers over a period of three years and will strive to impact over 1, 00,000 farmers indirectly. The programme is the largest awarded to ACCESS across its ten years. This large initiative is expected to introduce significant innovative package of practices both in cultivation and post-harvest and link small producers to mainstream markets, thereby building inclusive value chains.

Project Name: Jeevika
Location: Rajasthan
Supported by: HSBC

With support from Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana – a scheme by the Department of Agriculture, Government of Rajasthan – and running in tandem with Jeevika project supported by HSBC CSR, the project is composite livelihood promotion effort to improve the lives of primary producers through enhanced economic opportunities, greater financial awareness and enabling empowerment, specifically targeting poor women. The project has intervened in three basic components of socio-economic domain which are access to finance, access to entitlements and enhancing economic opportunities. The effort in Sawai Madhopur has largely focused on women from the villages relocated from the forest sanctuary, mostly belonging to OBC and SC households. Most of these women are members of the Ranthambor Mahila Ajeevika Producer Co. Ltd (RMAS), which has been incorporated in Sawai Madhopur. In Jaipur, Jeevika has largely focused on fashion jewelry artisans who mostly belong to the minority community and are mostly migrants from West Bengal, but settled in Jaipur.

Project Name: Pink City Rickshaw Company
Location: Rajasthan
Supported by: HSBC

Pink City Rickshaw Co. is an ACCESS initiative, seeking to accomplish triple bottom line (economic, environmental and social) outcomes. 200 women drivers, all from the slums and low income areas of Jaipur will drive ‘one of a kind’, stylized environment friendly e-rickshaw in the pink city of Jaipur. It will provide a new livelihood source and economic empowerment for young women from marginalized backgrounds, establish a profitable a public limited company with equity participation by the women and offer an eco-friendly option to address the problem of growing emission in the city. The initiative will work as a social enterprise and eventually the women drivers will be future owners of the company.

Project Name: Strengthening of Producer Company in Agri Value Chain Commodities
Location: Rajasthan
Supported by: Rabobank

ACCESS is the Lead Resource Agency in Rajasthan to coordinate and facilitate FPO promotion activities on day to day basis and help in creation of an enabling environment for FPOs. The Project “ Strengthening of Producer Company in Agri Value Chain Commodities in Jhadol “started in 2010 with support of RABO bank foundation under which a farmer owned institution” Udaipur Agro Producer Company Limited “got registered and is running with 2000 member farmers base. Apart from forming PoPs, processing of Ginger, Turmeric, and pulses it has successfully executed brand building, website creation and maintenance, marketing support, procurement from doorstep. Program witnesses hundreds of trainings, multiple exposure visits along with advisory services for the cash crops and pulses of the area.

Project Name: The ATMA (Agriculture Technology Management Activity) Initiative
Location: Madhya Pradesh
Supported by: Department of Farmer Welfare and Agriculture Development

The ATMA project has been established at the district level as an extension agency to promote and disseminate agriculture technology amongst farmers. It has established linkages with line departments, research organizations, Non – Governmental Organizations and other agencies associated with agricultural development. ACCESS is one of the Program Promoters Partners (PPP) with the Department of Farmer Welfare and Agriculture Development under ATMA in Rajgarh, Guna and Ashoknagar districts.

Project Name: Integrated Village Development through Farmer Producer Organization (Mission Sunehra Kal)
Location: Madhya Pradesh
Supported by: ITC

For its flagship CSR initiative ‘Mission Sunhera Kal’ in the block of Nagda in the district of Ujjain, ITC Ltd. has partnered with ACCESS Development Services. The ‘Mission Sunehra Kal’ is a part of the social investment initiative of ITC, the objective of which is to cater to the needs of the rural communities through its on-farm and off-farm development initiatives which include soil and water conservation programs, crop development, livestock development, women’s empowerment and gender equality with the overarching aim of empowering the stakeholder communities by promoting sustainable livelihoods.

Project Name: Improving Market Access through Farmer Producer Organization
Location: Madhya Pradesh
Supported by: Voluntary Services Organization (VSO)

Under this project one of the FPOs was selected by VSO (Voluntary Services Organization) India Trust, an Indian developmental organization, for the project named ‘Improving Market Access through Farmer Producer Organization’. The main goal of the project was to help the participating farmers to realize their price better than before (as compared to the baseline data) for their farm produce and enable them manage the price risk better. At the time of project formulation, RAPCL had 778 marginal and small farmers as members and a share capital collection of INR 59,750. With the help of numerous village level meetings RAPCL was able to mobilize 2019 farmers. Further 700 farmers have given their share money fully or partly making the total share contribution to INR 2.5 lakh. Various trainings, workshops, field demonstrations and exposure visits were planned and organized to increase agricultural knowledge base and provide all round technical support to community partners, staff and local resource person.

Project Name: SFAC (Small Farmers Agribusiness Consortium) – NFSM (National Food Security Mission) FPO Project
Location: Madhya Pradesh
Supported by: SFAC (Small Farmers Agribusiness Consortium)

Small Farmers’ Agribusiness Consortium (SFAC), a Society promoted by Dept. of Agriculture, Govt. of India, has been nominated by Ministry of Agriculture to act as a nodal agency to coordinate with various State governments, civil society partners, private sector, financial institutions, resource persons and other stakeholders to help in the conduct of baseline studies, promote Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) across the country and link producer groups (both existing ones and newly formed institutions) to marketing opportunities.
The purpose of the project is to collectivize farmers, especially small producers, at various levels across several states, to foster technology penetration, improve productivity, enable improved access to inputs and services and increase farmer incomes, thereby strengthening their sustainable agriculture based livelihoods. The SFAC uses the strategy of organizing Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) to take up this agenda and achieve the objectives. To undertake this task, the Mission has commissioned non-governmental organizations to organize FPOs to achieve the intended objectives.

Project Name: Sustainable Livelihood Enhancement by NTFP
Location: Madhya Pradesh
Supported by: State Rural livelihoods Mission (SRLM), Madhya Pradesh

The project targeted the tribal household in Sheopur district. These people mainly belong to the Sahariya tribal group who are classified as Scheduled Tribe and have Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Group (PVTG) status. The objectives of the project include the followings:

  • Training and capacity building of SHGs on sustainable harvesting of NTFPs and their primary grading and value addition at SHG/Producer group level.
  • Promote adoption of sustainable practices in their collection so as to stabilize/increase the decreasing resources due to destructive harvesting practices of NTFP collectors.
  • Increase in the income generated by the collector/ producer group through NTFP collection by way of better rate realization.
  • Primary processing and value addition of the collected NTFPs to fetch better returns.
  • Federating the producer groups in the form of a producer company which will facilitate trade and marketing of the value added products.

The project mainly focuses on four specific NTFPs, which are Salai gum, Amla, Bael and Gudmar.

Project Name: Cluster Intervention for Bhagalpur Power Loom Cluster
Location: Bihar
Supported by: SIDBI

Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) has entrusted ACCESS Development Services with a 32 months project for the development of Textile Cluster at Bhagalpur. The project aims at improving the overall working condition and productivity of the weavers by intervening in to different gap areas of the cluster such as infrastructure, technology, design development, skill development and institutional development.

To collectivize the small and marginal power loom weavers of the cluster in to a single platform ACCESS Development Services has recently promoted a producer company by the name “Bhagalpur Living Looms Producer Company Limited”. The major objective of the company is to enhance the exiting domain knowledge and skill sets of the weavers through various capacity building program like design development, product development, quality assurance and dyeing. The company is also going to take up the business activity of weaving, dyeing, printing and marketing of power loom products. Later a website is going to be developed to link product of the company to garb the business opportunity in contemporary E-market, national as well as overseas market. A holistic action plan is been developed to counter each and every gap areas of the cluster to make it a smart and advanced cluster in powerloom sector.

Project Name: Value Chain and Market Linkages Support for the State of Odisha
Location: Odisha
Supported by: Odisha Livelihoods Mission (OLM)

Odisha Livelihood Mission OLM) has identified ACCESS Development Services as the Technical Support Agency (TSA) for development of value chain in the state of Odisha. A special fund project has been sanctioned from the World Bank dedicated funds for livelihoods interventions for promotion of livelihoods clusters in 3 districts of Odisha through value chain approach in four different commodities viz. Mango, Cashew, Ginger and Hill broom.

The main objective of the assignment is to provide technical and handholding support to Odisha Livelihood Mission for promoting Producers organizations (Groups and Companies) in the development of value chain and market linkages in the agriculture/horticulture, NTFP in these districts, so that these groups and companies become profitable, bankable and self-sustaining in the long run.

  • Various components of this assignment are :
    Handholding support to PGs and PCs in implementation of vale chain model, business plan development, market analysis, trader identification and product disposal
  • Facilitating access to technology to address critical gaps in production, post-harvest and processing, value addition and marketing,
  • Facilitating partnerships development linkages, convergence with key knowledge/technology institution, private firms, marketing institutions and traders
  • Organising capacity building training and exposures for SMMU/DMMU/BMMU functionaries and commodity on Producer Company and value chain concept.