Promotion of Women’s economic empowerment & livelihood activities

Posted on: August 4th, 2016

Total Fund: Nu.3.1m
Duration: 2014-2015
Funded by: UN Women
Sites: Tsento, Paro Dzongkhag

This project is divided into two components. One to support women Self help Group with livelihood activities that will generate income and the other to promote green technologies in the same gewog.
A group with 19 members formed a women self help group which included female yak herders from Soe Yaksa. The members have been trained in making soap and candle, dry felting, knitting and pottery. They have also been trained in financial literacy like all the other SHGs and have started a group saving. A work-shed was constructed to provide them with a common space to make their products/crafts and also use as a sales outlet. The group has already linked up with resorts, hotels and handicrafts shop to market their products. Their products are also available through the various outlets of Tarayana Rural Crafts. The group participated in the Snow Leopard Festival held in Jomolhari base-camp and were able to promote and sell their products.

The second group dealt  with Green technologies and the members of three villages of Zamsar (35hh), Chhungjey (35hh) and Nyamjey (40) with a total of 110 households are participating in this initiative. 45 fuel efficient stoves have been constructed for those interested households. The rationale for promoting this stove is mainly to reduce the drudgery of fuel wood collection. It will also reduce the smoke in the house thereby reducing the incidences of respiratory and eye problems. These fuel efficient stoves will also free up time for women and children to take up other productive initiatives as they spend less time on collecting firewood.

Solar dryers from our fabrication unit in Dagana were procured and distributed to the interested community members at subsidized rates. A total of 45 household procured these dryers and have started using them.

This project gave ample opportunities for synergies between the different SHGs that were already formed by the Foundation in other Dzongkhags. The following skilled members from these SHGs groups were brought to Paro to transfer the following skills to these new groups:

• A Soap and Candle producer from the Unit in Langthil was hired to train the group in producing the same.
• Solar Dryer experts from the Dagana SHG were hired to train and supply the dryers to the target communities
• A Potter from Tongtongophey was hired to train the members on making pottery on the electric wheel and the Production team from the Tarayana Rural Crafts Unit trained the members in making the dry felted products.
• Soap making (cold processing) training was conducted for two days by two expertise from Department of Youth & Sports programme.
• The Finance Officer and one of the Field Officers trained the group in Financial Literacy
• Stove Technicians from Sarpang were hired to construct and train the community members of the selected communities. A total of 45 fuel efficient cook stove was constructed in Tsento,Paro Dzongkhag.