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MPOWER is based on the concept that the rural poor have innate abilities to fight poverty. But socio-economic and institutional constraints prevent them from accessing resources that could help them better their lives.

The Government of Rajasthan seeks to address these constraints and support the rural poor in drawing on their innate abilities to improve their lives through the IFAD-funded Mitigating Poverty in Western Rajasthan (MPOWER).

 

The Problem

 

The rural poor farm marginal and under-productive landholdings. They suffer periodic droughts, do not have secure land tenure, and rely on seasonal work in agriculture and forests. In some districts, low population density, relative isolation and inadequate infrastructure mean higher prices for agricultural inputs, poor extension services, credit and markets, and a dearth of information. These difficulties limit their opportunities.

 

The Challenge

 

Several schemes sponsored by the Government of India and the Government of Rajasthan address rural poverty. Many of these aim to reduce food insecurity by providing social safety nets in the form of short-term employment. Others aim to improve socio-economic infrastructure in villages and boost resource productivity by investing in agriculture, soil and water conservation, watershed management and forestry, and developing micro-finance and micro-enterprises.

However, these schemes have limited resources. Rural poverty is pervasive and fiscal resources at national and state levels are inadequate. Eliminating rural poverty is thus extremely challenging.

 
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