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Adivasi Women Champion Sustainable Solutions for Community Well-Being

An adivasi woman plucking eggplants from her kitchen garden

In the periphery of the Panna Tiger Reserve in central India, Adivasi women are leading the charge in restoring their community's well-being through innovative use of local resources. Despite facing challenges such as limited forest access, scarce livelihood opportunities, inadequate nutrition, economic distress, and occupational health issues due to mining, these women are devising creative solutions for sustenance.

Optimizing the resources at their disposal, they have established flourishing kitchen gardens by revitalizing their homesteads and repurposing abandoned house sites. Village wells have been equipped with solar pumps to support the gardens and meet their daily needs. The fresh harvest not only caters to their own requirements but the surplus produce is also shared with neighbouring villages at affordable prices. Moreover, these nutritious greens are included in food kits for Silicosis and TB patients, providing them with essential supplementary nutrition.

Along with the modern medicines, the vegetables grown by the women and traditional home remedies prepared using local forest resources are collectively aiding patients in managing their ill-health and hunger. In recent months, as many as 12 TB patients in these villages have successfully completed their medication course and are on the path to recovery. The women deeply value their natural resources and are effectively leveraging them to safeguard the well-being of their community. These efforts underscore the women's pivotal role in implementing sustainable solutions to drive positive change in their distressed communities.

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