Women Empowerment Programme

Women Empowerment
VRDP works in 82 villages in Kadayampatti block (block is an administrative unit of large cluster of villages) of Salem district. The economy of the village is mainly agriculture. Part of the project area is the rain shadow of the hills and so receive erratic and low rainfall, leading to migration of men to towns for work.

Rural indebtedness is still an issue and debt bondage is still in evidence. Besides the high incidence of sex selective abortions of females, Salem district is notorious for female infanticide, considered the highest in the state. Alcoholism among men and violence on women in the home was high when VRDP began work here. It still is a matter for concern. However VRDP has managed to wrought very remarkable changes in the working villages.

Beginning with a program of campaign for the abolition of SSA and female infanticide, VRDP in 1995, with Trocaire partnership began work in 20 villages with literacy classes for women and women’s sanghams to address issues of domestic violence on women; early girl-child marriage and debt trap, and provide vocational skills.

Today VRDP has helped establish over 482 SHGs in the 82 working villages in 8 years. The Kurinji Mahalir Iyakkam - the strong women's Federation with 10987 women members that VRDP helped to promote mobilizes credit for lending to the SHGs, takes up women's concerns in 4 Districts (Salem, Krishnagiri, Namakkal, Dharmapuri) of Tamilnadu and Karaikal region in Pondicherry State runs a Women's Cell for assisting women who are in situations of conflict.