Credit, Micro Enterprise & Livelihoods Intervention
various watershed projects Self-Help Groups and their savings-
and thrift activities became an integral part. In SAMUHA the
many groups could not be overlooked by a watershed team alone,
so a separate Micro Credit unit evolved, MUNJAVU.
a development organisation working in the South Indian state
of Karnataka. SAMUHA works with vulnerable people to improve
their quality of live within defined periods of time
(lit. "dawn" in Kannada) was established in November
98 and is described below.
Central Team: they now serve as a resource group to MMS,
committed to the growth and sustainability of MMS through
training, technical support, and promoting the formation of
new SHG's, as well as overseeing book-keeping and auditing.
At present, the MUNJAVU team consists of 33 members.
organizers: MUNJAVU social workers, each one looking after
3-4 villages. Mostly women who come from other areas of Karnataka,
since local women are difficult to recruit.
animators: Literate (mostly young) paid volunteers from
the villages, who help organizing and managing SHG and who
serve as a link between MUNJAVU and the villagers.
Help Groups (SHG) / Munjavu Thrift Groups (MTG): [subsequently
referred to as SHG] are involved in savings and thrift
activities through which they build and expand their financial
resources. In each village, groups of 5-15 women form a MUNJAVU
SHG. In 2002, the SHG's of Raichur and Koppal District were
registered as two independent cooperatives under the State
of Karnataka. The SHG's form the foundation of MUNJAVU's activities.
Training opportunities and education sessions are provided
through SHG's, who also serve as a medium for information dissemination
to the whole village. Thus SHG women take on a central role
in the village, improving women's status and involvement in
MUNJAVU Committee (VMC): One representative of each SHG
come together to form a Village MUNJAVU Committee, which discusses
problems of SHG's, and helps in planning and implementing any
MUNJAVU activities in the villages.
General Body (RGB): These VMC's in turn elect one representative
to comprise the RGB. Initially they met once per month to
discuss the functioning of the SHG's in their respective villages;
the process of forming a cooperative; and to receive training
on a range of micro-economic development activities. Further,
all activities of MUNJAVU staff were reviewed by the RGB.
Once the MMS cooperatives was formed, the RGB began to meet
only once every four months.
Mahila Vividodesha Sauharda Sahakara Niyamita (MMVSSN):
MUNJAVU formed women cooperatives, of which there are two,
one in ISPWDK, Tavargera (Koppal District) and one in Deodurg
(Raichur District). These cooperatives became the focal points
for all economic and livelihoods activities of MUNJAVU. There
are over Rs. 55 lakhs line of credit available between the
two cooperatives. In short it is called MMS.
Group: consist of 4 women of RGB and VMC members. They
oversee and monitor the different MUNJAVU/MMS activities.
Currently there is one group for each of the six different
and Objectives of MUNJAVU
primary aim of MUNJAVU is stated as:
towards women's empowerment through integrated development.
Using thrift as a catalyst, a series of women-centred economic
and livelihoods activities are implemented through women's
to promote a habit of savings among women
to develop women's management skills to meet their own and
their families' financial and non-financial needs
to improve economic conditions of the family
to facilitate self reliance by generating funds
through savings and using these funds to meet household
consumption, production and asset creation needs
to use thrift to promote self-confidence among members by
increasing accessibility to economic / livelihoods opportunities
such as bank resources/schemes, government programmes, and
to develop qualities like unity, interest, equality, co-operation
& leadership among members/women
to pursue individual and group development among members/women
to enhance women's/members skills of decision making through
At present, MUNJAVU
works with approximately 500 MUNJAVU SHG groups in 131 villages
of across Raichur, Koppal and Uttar Kannada Districts of Karnataka.
Annex 1 shows MUNJAVU and SHG statistics and figures.