In 2008, Sagera Firoz Tarbi got married at the age of 16. She and her husband had two children (a girl and a boy). During the fifth year of their marriage, she got pregnant and delivered a baby girl. This time her husband was expecting a baby boy. Due to the birth of a girl, her husband started living with another woman without giving her talaq.

Sagera decided to come back to her parents’ place and started living with them. To make both ends meet, Sagera started working as a daily wage labour. However, her earnings were not enough to fulfill the needs of her three children. She was always worried about not being able to save any money for her children’s future.

In 2017, Sagera joined an SHG formed under Maharashtra State Rural Livelihood Mission (MSRLM) but couldn’t avail any income generating benefits due to improper orientation to SHG on Bank finance and savings. In 2018, the SHG was reformed under the WtRF project of CARE India. This time Sagera and other SHG members were happy because they were given a proper training and orientation session. She came to know about the schemes of getting finance from bank as well as the saving schemes.

In September 2018, the State Bank of India (SBI) sanctioned a loan for rupees one lakh to their SHG. All SHG members, including Sagera purchased a goat using this loan amount. As per the members, they plan to raise the kids for a few years before selling them in the market for at least rupees four thousand per goat. All members are very excited with their new initiative and are feeding the goats with leaves of Heura (locally available plant, grown naturally in drought areas and increase milk production in milch animals) to goats.

While talking to the team Sagera shared, “I had a very tough time when my husband left me with three children and started living with another woman without giving me talaq. The reformation of Self-Help Group (SHG) under Where the Rain Falls (WtRF) project helped me become self-sufficient. Now, I have started saving for my children’s future.” SHG member Sagera Firoz Tarbi (26 years) from Umapur village.

Where the Rain Falls  in India is a community-based in situ adaptation project to increase resilience of Adivasi women to shocks and stresses around water, owing to climate change. While Phase I of the project focused on research for situational analysis, followed by improved water management for adaptation planning, the interventions of phase II seek to address chronic risks like food and water insecurity due to climate change and how it impacts Adivasi women’s access, control, and management of natural resources.

Shatarupa Kashyap