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Causes to Support - Income Generation

Over 350 million people live below the poverty line.Poverty is characterized by a lack of income/purchasing power attributable to lack of productive employment. NGOs and community based self-help groups play the roles of facilitators/social animators in encouraging participatory approaches to empowering the poor by income generating projects. This is with the objective of improving their economic status.


1. Artisan Issue
2. Livelihood Issues
3. Fair Trade
4. Credit/ Micro Credit/ Self Help Groups
5. Skill Training


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Artisan Issue

Over 25 million craftspeople in India. This is second only to the numbers engaged in agriculture.
The state of India's artisans is a matter of great concern. Intervention programs to sustain crafts people and crafts have been unable to reach the average artisan. If the trend is not arrested a rich cultural heritage is likely to be lost forever.

Livelihood Issues

Projected population at the end of the 10th Plan (2007) is 1112.9 million
Annual average for unemployed for each of the years is 4.1 million.
Unemployment leading to poverty is one of the major problems facing India. About 70% of the population lives in villages engaged in agriculture. Lack of employment opportunities in rural areas causes mass migration to cities. This creates the problem of slums.


Fair Trade

"Fair is a relative term." The idea is also to cut down on the middlemen so that the product reaching the buyer in the richer part of the world is still desirable, price-wise.
Fair Trade is about giving poor people power. It is a thriving business concept. It means paying producers a fair price for their work, helping them gain the skills and knowledge they need to develop their businesses, and challenging ways of trading which keep people poor. It enables people who rely on selling crafts and textiles for a living, or who produce food items such as tea, coffee, honey and chocolate, now have the chance to work their way out of poverty. NGOs often act as facilitators in this process.

Some relevant websites:

Credit / Micro Credit / Self-help groups

"If we are looking for one single action which will enable the poor to overcome poverty, I would focus on credit". (Mr Mohammad Yunus, Founder, Grameen Bank)
Provision of credit is an exercise in self-help and community reinvestment. Credit leads to social justice and empowerment. Effort is being made by credit planners to target women as they have a history of being better re -payers of loan. The development of confidence in the community has been the single biggest impact of micro finance interventions at grassroot levels.

Some relevant websites:


Skill Training

The small scale/cottage sector accounts for over 10% of the production in agro and rural based industries.Government programmes focus on skill improvement, employment generation, transfer of technology, rural industrialization and promotion of self-reliance among the people. NGO's assist in raw material assistance, skill training, marketing, coordination and inter institutional linkages and render advice to the government on policy matters concerning the small-scale sector. There is a need to motivate educated unemployed youth for self-employment, by setting up small enterprises.

For details on Government Schemes for income generation click here:


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