DHAN Foundation, as a partner organisation to IWP/GWP-India helmed the WACREP sponsored programme to increase food and water security of highly vulnerable farmers, women and landless households in the southern states of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka in India from October 2013 – March 2015 (for a total of 18 months). Through the rehabilitation of 4 irrigation tanks in Tamil Nadu, construction of 17 farm ponds in Andhra Pradesh (11) and Karnataka (6) and deepening of 3 Ooranies in Tamil Nadu, it was aimed that climate resilience of affected communities will be raised as a result. In total nearly 1,350 households have improved access to sources of water.
The villages and beneficiaries were identified from two different agro-climatic zones (coastal and rural ecosystems) to gauge variabilities in adaptation to climate change. The project targeted 10 villages in seven districts across three southern Indian states: Ramanathapuram, Madurai, Sivagangai and Virudhunagar districts in Tamil Nadu, Chittoor district in Andhra Pradesh; Kolar and Bijapur district in Karnataka.
These interventions were carried out through community institutions called Vayalagams. Through the Vayalagam Farmer Organizations, DHAN facilitates rehabilitation of tanks for restoring physical structures to their originally designed standard, but more importantly, facilitating the proper maintenance of the tanks, efficient water management and implementing improved cropping practices in a sustainable manner. About 811 household units in the project locations were organised into social capital of Vayalagams.