ACF was awarded the Best Project Implementation Agency by NABARD for its work in the Watershed Development Projects in Darlaghat. Organized by NABARD, Himachal Pradesh, this glittering award ceremony was held on 9th Feb 2022 during the State Credit Seminar 2022-23.
When ACF began working in Darlaghat, water was the biggest challenge. Due to the pressing issues of soil erosion, eradication of green cover and reduction in the productivity of agriculture in the hills of Darlaghat, ACF decided that a watershed development project would be the most effective solution. It approached NABARD to join hands and address the problem by following a ‘Ridge to Valley’ approach.
ACF ensured collective action of the community by first creating awareness amongst the people, then commenced work building farm bunds and Gabion structures to halt the flow of water down hills and drive it underground. This resulted in a rise in the water table, an increase in green cover and an increase in fodder for dairy farming.
With various water management interventions, and the full participation of the community, around 5874 hectares of land was treated in collaboration with NABARD. So impressed was the State Government, that ACF expanded its approach and today, 11 watersheds have been developed in the state.
With a key focus on building People’s Institutions, ACF harnessed the power of local Watershed Committees to assist in building bunds, contour trenches, ponds, water storage tanks, check dams and gabion structures to stop soil erosion in the watershed project areas. The Village Watershed Development Committee of Patti Badog was also recognized with an award for the ‘Best Performance’ in this project.
ACF was felicitated by Shri. Virender Kanwer, Hon’ble Minister of Agriculture cum Animal Husbandry and Minister of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj, Government of Himachal Pradesh, along with other dignitaries like the Additional Chief Secretary, Finance and Registrar of Cooperative Societies HP, GM RBI Himachal Pradesh and other NABARD officials.