Economic Empowerment of Tribal Women

Trying to transform passive buyers into active sellers

Photo of Seema Prakash
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  • Yes, I fulfill all of the eligibility criteria.

Initiative's representative name

Seema Prakash

Initiative's representative date of birth


Initiative’s representative gender

  • Woman

Which eligible market are you based in?

  • India

Where are you making a difference?

Country - India, State- Madhya Pradesh District - Khandwa (East Nimar) Block- Khalwa

Website or social media url(s)

When was your organisation founded?


Focus areas

  • Helping people adapt to technologies of the future
  • Financial skills and capability
  • Reskilling and upskilling the workforce

Project Stage

  • Start-Up (first few activities have happened)
  • Established (successfully passed early phases, have a plan for the future)

Yearly Budget: How much capital do you need to accomplish your proposed project?

  • $50k - $100k

Organisation Type

  • Non-profit / NGO

1. Founding story: Share a story about the "Aha!" moment that led the founder(s) to get started or the story of how you saw the potential for this to succeed

Seeking a viable solution to malnutrition and food insecurity we landed up on the point of emphasizing the economic empowerment of Korku tribe women in particular and help them transform from passive buyers to active sellers. The idea was favored by most of the women who have federated into a producer company to sell the surplus and undertake other viable economic activities. It is seen as a macro solution to alarming malnutrition and prevailing hunger among them

2. The problem: What problem surrounding employability or financial capability are you helping to solve?

Korku tribe is a lesser known and nutritionally vulnerable tribe in Central India. We have been addressing the issue of malnutrition and household hunger among them. Now that they have revived their traditional crops and Millet to revamp the community nutrition , they need to find opportunities to sell surplus. We have federated them as a Producers' Company but the way froward demand financial support and skill building and marketing linkages

3. Your Solution: How are you planning to solve this problem? Share your specific approach.

We as part of our endeavors to resolve household food security and sustainable community nutrition, promoted revival of Millet and Traditional crops and Backyard Nutrition Gardens and Backyard Poultry that went well and now the community women are looking forward to be entrepreneurs. We are undertaking intensive organic farming and increasing the production. The surplus production marketing is needed. We have mobilized them to have a Producers' Company but now help is needed to carry it forward.

4. How are you innovating or using unique approaches to solving the problem?

Korku tribe women with low Human Development Index have been passive buyers since long. They need to be empowered into active sellers. It will improve economic status of their homes and neighborhood and in the long run help them have a dignified life that will assist them access most of the food and nutrition they would need fro them and their kids. Small experiments were conducted and the result was encouraging. To fulfill this dream we are provocatively promoting their economic empowerment.

6. Financial capability: how is your organization or project creating innovative solutions that arm people with ability to optimize their current and future financial health

The women are encouraged to save and pool in resource into the Producers' Company to build up financial base to undertake business. But that's not enough. They need some external hand holding and financial support to move forward.

6a. Please describe what aspect of financial capability your organization is focused on fostering and how you have measured / plan to measure progress.

We have traversed a long way that began with addressing malnutrition and food crisis among the Korku tribe families. The understanding increased and it was felt that economic empowerment is essential to address the problem/s. We are emphasizing pooling resources to help them grow into an economic entrepreneur community. Hence financial support, managerial skills are essential As they often migrate seasonally the endeavor will help them earn at home by marketing their surplus agriculture products and in the long run reduce the vulnerability to migration as well.

7. Marketplace: Who else is addressing the same problem? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

In our geographic region no such initiative is undergoing among the reference community - the Korku tribe. But in other regions, the Women Producers' Company fare well. Their experiences can provide motivation and learning.

8. Impact: How has your project made a difference so far?

The women of one of our project villages decided to address the problem of acute water shortage. As no government help was available, they volunteered to deepen the pond in their neighborhood. they contributed voluntary labor and in hot summers deepened the well. Now they have rainwater that stay stored fro longer duration and helps both people and cattle. They through their monetary saving took up fisheries and made a marginal profit. That has built a confidence that they can take up greater economic enterprise.

9. Financial Sustainability Plan. Can you tell us about you plan to fund your project and how that plan will be sustainable in the short, medium, and long term?

We are seeking external support. Given the low economic status women have not been able to contribute enough to have the required financial resources to begin the business. Once that is done and some business activity begins, the sustainability factor can be thought more rationally.

10. Team

Director- Overall Project Responsibility, liaison with donors and government departments Coordinators- overall program coordination, training , reporting Front line workers - implementing programs, grassroots training , reporting Administrative Staff- Managing day to day administration, finance, audits and logistics

Help Us Support Diversity! Are you a member of an under-served , under-represented, or marginalized group in your country of residence? (yes/no) (this question is optional – if you choose to fill it out, the response will not be shared with your fellow contestants)

  • Gender
  • Socioeconomic class

If you selected “yes” to any of the categories above, please explain how being a member of this group has impacted you and your work?

It has helped us in defining our Mission and Theory of Change

How did you hear about this challenge?

  • Ashoka page or contact

Evaluation results

1 evaluation so far

1. OVERALL Evaluation:

Yes, absolutely! - 100%

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No - 0%

2. Is this entry INNOVATIVE?

Yes, absolutely! - 0%

Yes/maybe - 100%

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No - 0%

3. Does this entry have SOCIAL IMPACT?

Yes, absolutely! - 100%

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4. Is this entry VIABLE financially and operationally?

Yes, absolutely! - 0%

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Yes, absolutely! - 100%

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6. FEEDBACK: Highlights

IMPACT POTENTIAL: You use specific numbers and evidence to describe what your project has achieved so far (or plan to achieve in the future) – and you have a concrete plan for future impact. You have specific tools for measuring impact. - 100%

QUALITY OF INNOVATION: You have a great understanding of the problem, have researched existing solutions, and have developed unique, thoughtful solutions - 0%

FINANCIAL AND OPERATIONAL SUSTAINABILITY: You have given a great deal of thought to not just the idea itself but how to make it work operationally and financially in the present and future; your plan is specific and you value sustainability. - 0%

CHANGEMAKING ACTIVATION: You have a good plan on how to activate changemakers and empower them to innovate through your product or programming - 0%

Other option - 0%

7. FEEDBACK: Areas for Improvement

IMPACT POTENTIAL: make sure to provide specific instances of your social impact (or how you plan to measure impact) – it may be helpful to describe the beneficiaries, the main activities/products, and provide evidence of (or plan for) impact evaluation - 0%

QUALITY OF INNOVATION: make sure to describe how your solution is unique and innovative – it is helpful to include the research you have done on past solutions and how your solution is different from (and/or builds upon) these. - 0%

FINANCIAL AND OPERATIONAL SUSTAINABILITY: make sure you have provided descriptive information about your financial sustainability plan. Where do the funds come from now and do you have a concrete plan for future sustainability? - 100%

CHANGEMAKING ACTIVATION: make sure you describe your plan for how to empower others to become changemakers through your programming, service, or product - 0%

WRITING STYLE. Try to be concise, descriptive, and specific. Avoid jargon. - 0%

Nothing stands out! I thought it was great. - 0%

Other option - 0%


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