23 July, 2017

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IFAD-IPAF Joint Monitoring held in India

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Written by Marie N. Ngoddo

 

Tebtebba, together with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) country office India, facilitated a joint monitoring of a project under the Indigenous Peoples Assistance Facility (IPAF) and an IFAD loan project in India on March 21-23, 2017. 

The IPAF is a grants mechanism under IFAD. It provides small grants to indigenous peoples organizations so that they can implement development projects based on their identity, culture, knowledge and natural resources.

IPAF is one of IFAD’s strategies to operationalize its Policy for Engagement with Indigenous Peoples. Tebtebba is the co-manager of IPAF in Asia. IFAD, as a lending organization, also implements loan projects. However, the connection between the IPAF small grants and the big IFAD loan projects has not been strong. This joint IFAD-IPAF monitoring visit is a concrete way of connecting the IFAD loan projects and the IPAF projects.

There are currently nine projects in Asia under the IPAF, one of which is the project “Revamping Livelihood of the Santhal Tribe through WADI Approach” in West Bengal, India. This is being implemented by the Surul Centre for Services in Rural Area (CSRA), and the main beneficiaries are the Santhal indigenous peoples group.

In the nearby state of Jharkhand is an IFAD loan project called “Jharkhand Tribal Empowerment and Livelihood Project” (JTELP) being implemented by the Jharkhand Tribal Development Society (JTDS). The project also has Santhal among the direct beneficiaries. The proximity of the two projects and the fact that they are dealing with the same indigenous group were opportune reasons for a joint monitoring.

The joint monitoring team was composed of the IPAF coordinator of Tebtebba, the secretary of CSRA, and two staff of JTDS. The objectives were: To enhance knowledge and learning between IPAF, Tebtebba and JTDS; and Establish possible areas for interface between the IPAF and IFAD projects and establish mutually beneficial linkages between the Santhal community of Jharkhand and West Bengal.

The monitoring team visited villages under the two projects and interacted with the direct beneficiaries. It is a great exchange opportunity, but it is still open-ended what concrete partnership will come out of the joint monitoring. It is hoped that JTDS and CSRA will continue linking on each other and finding ways of interface.