To identify and priorities the problems, ABC conducted a need assessment among the target area, and CBOs. Discussions have also been conducted among the PRI members, local NGOs and district level traditional marine fish workers union.
- Lack of skills and training opportunities among youth and adolescent girls
After passing the 10th class, the students were unable to join in higher education. Due to financial crisis, they are unable to undertake vocational and skills trainings. In nearby cities inside and outside the state, plenty of job opportunities available. But skilled and efficient man power not available to meet the existing job demand in the market for various trades likely driving, welding, mobile repairing, electricians but skilled manpower supply not available to meet the current demand. Due to poverty, forcibly the poor youth members migrating to cities, converting daily labors, earning low wages and affected by HIV/AIDS.
- Lack of financial and marketing linkage, inadequate systems and techniques to support fisher women micro enterprises Fisher women often undertake two types of fish related micro enterprises
- Fresh fish vending in local Markets on daily basis and
- Dry fish processing and selling on weekly basis.
These enterprises are profitable. However, due to lack of proper storage and techniques in processing both fresh and dry fish, women end up selling their products underpriced. For instance, fisher women selling fresh fish cannot store fish even for a day due lack of cold storage, which forces them to sell fish for lower price towards end of the day.
Fisher women depend on the traditional dry fish processing till today. This impact on the quality of fish processing and contributes to wastage. There are various hygienic fish processing techniques available such as dry fish processing using solar dryers. However, due to lack of awareness and finance, fisher women never exploited these techniques to improve their micro enterprises in a profitable manner. Women mainly undertaking dry fish enterprises have to restrict to only one market place where traditionally fish has been sold once in a week. They never get the opportunity to explore other markets beyond the existing one due to lack of marketing support. There are other fish related micro enterprises such as fish pickle making, which has not been explored to its full potential. Although the demand for such kind of products is huge, women did not emphasize much on this venture due to lack of skills and marketing opportunities.
- Lack of awareness and poor implementation of government schemes
Given the poverty scenario, a number of poverty eradication measures have been initiated by the government, mostly central government-supported programs. For improving the standard of living of the poor, state intervention in the form of implementing antipoverty programs, elimination of hunger schemes, Employment Assurance Scheme (EAS), Public Distribution System (PDS), Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS) and Midday Meal Scheme have been introduced. All the above schemes are aimed at improving the living conditions of the poor by directly involving the appropriate target groups. However, this programme is not directly included related to vocational and skills development and not reaching to the poor people due to lack of awareness.
- Lack of capacity building, skills and strong community-based institutions
Many SHGs among coastal fishing communities have difficulty in accessing these resources because they lack voice, confidence, basic administrative skills and capacity and capability in negotiating with, and accessing support from rural banks, resource and marketing agencies. Fishery women groups are either defunct or are functioning at very low levels of potential. The quality of bookkeeping is generally reported to be poor. Substantial numbers of poorer households are outside of the SHG fold. Lack of capacity-building activities for SHG and Cooperatives in the field of vocational training and micro enterprise promotion. The lack of financial resources and access to sources of credit needed for investments in productive assets, to meet operational expenses and to cover consumption needs during periods with little or no income is among the major problems and livelihood constraints identified by members of fishing communities.
The initiative was originated at the target communities. During filed visits and community meetings, the villagers approached ABC and requested to undertake development projects on vocational and skill training in the form of request letters. ABC community volunteers conducted social research using tools, problem identification, problem prioritize and problem tree. Based on the priority of the need and demand from the community, ABC has taken this initiative to design a community based vocational and skill development project for sustainable development of fisher women, youth and adolescent girls in coastal villages of xxxxx in active support of xxxxxx on sea.
Goal of the project:
‘To enhancing the employability of 200 Nos disadvantaged and poor Adolescent girls, youth and through vocational and skill Trainings in remote coastal villages of xxxxxx “