Gram Panchayat Cluster: A Community Development Framework

Funding Agency: Mission Samriddhi, Chennai

The prevailing situation in our country arising from COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the necessity of moving towards self-reliant villages. This can be achieved by connecting various development initiatives at the village level through self-governance mode under the provision of the 73rd amendment of the Constitution. This project is aimed at creating a model for self-governance through grass-root level community participation. Towards this goal, Manbasa cluster of Dudhi Block is selected consisting 5 adjoing Gram Panchayats that have significant success story on community development work. This project aims at

• Empowering people’s voluntary involvement in the community development process.
• Achieving enhanced participation of people in self-governance, planning and implementation.
• Developing Gram Panchayat Institution through GPOD model of organizational development and improve its performance
• Rejuvenation and best management of Natural Resources, creating panchayat’s own resource for community development.
• Preparation of quality Gram Panchayat Development Plan (GPDP) covering all aspect of human and social development
• Social Development of all human beings, ensuring equal opportunity for all – focusing vulnerable groups first, through strengthening panchayat standing committees.
• Connecting different economic, eco-friendly models for ensuring sustainable livelihood opportunities.
• Laisioning with different stakeholders, all levels of panchayats and various government schemes.

A key change makers team at Gram panchayat level consisting of trained volunteers devoted for community development is being groomed for achieving these goals.

Activities undertaken as part of the project involve

• Personnel Development: Organization of training programs for volunteers on different aspects of self governance and self reliance
• Community mobilization: Involving people in thinking, planning and implementation processes of community development so that unanimous decisions can be reached for the benefit of all
• Conducting regular meetings of Ward Sabha and Gram Sabha
• Organizational Development Process: Organizational Mapping (OM) and documentation by GP members for (a) proper understanding of present status of GP infrastructure and its functioning and (b) identifying the gaps and bring clarity in determining the milestones towards building the Panchayat institution.
• Regularization Gram Panchayat Office: Ensuring maintenance of regular office timings, availability of panchayat records of infrastructure & resources, process documentation, and dissemination of information
• Social Development and Strengthening of the Standing Committees: Organization of orientation programs for educating the standing committees about their responsibilities, sharing the results of organizational mapping and for future planning of milestones to achieve goals. These committees are expected to work on education for all, promotion of gender sensitivity and healthy living.
• Rejuvenation and best Management of Natural Resource: Developing plans for conservation, rejuvenation and sustainable utilization of local natural resources with special focus on watershed development, improving soil health and ground water recharge.
• Connecting dots for planning and developing eco-friendly economic models: Organization of Samridhi Yatra to study and connect the successful models analyzed under local scenario, workout best possible options.
• Preparation of Garm Panchayat Development Plan (GPDP) and ensuring its effective implementation in a transparent manner