An eighth-class-pass housewife and mother of two sons including one who is differently-abled, Chetnaben Sindha lives in Kamboi village, Jambusar block in Bharuch district, Gujarat.

There was a time when she used to help her husband in farming and cattle rearing, using traditional methods. Since she joined the Self-Help Group formed by CARE India, she has started adopting and implementing new, more effective practices. As a result of this, Chetnaben’s income from their cattle milk business saw a huge rise. Following this, there was no looking back for her.

Soon after attending these trainings, Chetnaben was selected as a ‘change agent’ at CARE India. Given her entrepreneurial ability, she soon became a bank ‘sakhi’ in the taluka. She also underwent training to become a dairy entrepreneur and to provide para veterinary services in her village. These engagements became additional sources of income for her.

A year ago, she lost her husband but despite this huge loss, she has managed to survive strongly with her children, being able to support them with her earnings and enhanced capabilities.

Chetnaben is now inspiring other women from her village to come out of their homes and put their skills to use. She leads the Kamboi Sakhi Sangh (Federation), formed in January 2020, which received a community investment fund of Rs.7,00,000 from the National Rural Livelihood Mission department.

She is also the president of Jay Verai Maa, a registered Self-Help Group running in collaboration with Gujarat Livelihood Promotion Company. The members of the group have been trained in business development, marketing and promotion, financial literacy, leadership management, improved agriculture and animal husbandry practices, through various training and exposure visits. Their business began in January 2021 as an agro service provider, and their turnover already is Rs. 8,00,000.

“Joining the Self-Help Group was the best decision of my life which has changed not only my financial but also social and personal life,” shares Chetnaben.

About the Programme: CARE India is implementing a programme on Economic Empowerment of Women Smallholders and Workers through improved Agriculture and Inclusive Dairy Value Chain Promotion (IAIDVC) in Jambusar block of Bharuch district of Gujarat since April 2017. Till date, 3,369 women small workers have been engaged with the project under 293 Self-Help Groups from 59 villages of the block.

Posted by: Shabnam Qureshi, Institution Building Officer, IAIDVC, Jambusar

Location: Kamboi village, Jambusar block, Bharuch district, Gujarat

In 2022, for International Women’s Day (IWD), the UN has adopted the theme ‘Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow’, to celebrate the tremendous efforts by women and girls around the world in shaping a more equal future and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.