NGO: Samerth Charitable Trust

Background:

Samerth Charitable Trust was founded in 1992 with a mission to strengthen the capacity of rural Indians to live healthier, safer, and more empowered lives. Samerth works primarily in the urban areas of Ahmedabad, Rapar, and Nakhatrana block of Kutch District in Gujarat. Their focus is promoting education, healthcare, sanitation, peace building, and other such programs.

IDRF Partner Since: 2009

Focus Area: Health & Ecofriendly Development

Location: Gujarat

Project Title: Water Harvesting and Sanitation in Kutch District

A safe and sustainable water supply, basic sanitation, and good hygiene are fundamental for a healthy, productive, and dignified life. And yet, many of India’s poor rural people lack access to an improved water supply and improved sanitation facilities. IDRF, through partnership with Samerth Charitable Trust, has been working on these issues since 2007, constructing sanitation units for poor and marginalized communities living below poverty line (most of whom are first generation toilet users) and bringing water to some of the most brutal desert regions of India.

IDRF and Samerth have been working in the Kutch District of Gujarat, which is characterized as one of the most arid and drought-prone regions of India. Communities experience an array of problems associated with the availability of and access to sources of clean water, including poor health, forced migration, and decreased livelihoods due to agricultural unproductivity and insufficient water for livestock. IDRF has partnered with Samerth to ensure that villagers are well prepared for even the driest seasons, through Samerth’s Water Harvesting project. Provision of dug wells and earthen check dams has helped a population of nearly 35,000 people and 18,500 cattle, greatly reducing many of the threats to their wellbeing.

IDRF has also been working with Samerth to construct over 1,200 much-needed sanitation facilities for over 3,000 impoverished rural families. The sanitation security experienced by villagers through this program has had a great impact on improving the overall standard of living.

$1,000 goes a long way to improving the lives of the poor, as it provides the resources needed to build a well for a small village or sanitation units for 6 families, ensuring their future health and livelihoods are sustained, and fulfilling their right to an adequate standard of living.

building water harvesting structure 2014