Tuesday, February 23, 2010

RVC in Assam (1993 to 2003)

Foreword: The works of RVC during the period 1993 to 2003 mainly focused on Behavioral change of the community on water and sanitation as well as general hygiene practices; hand-pump and ring-well support and construction of low cost latrines, rescue, relief and rehabilitation of flood affected people in distress( in the process during the period RVC has rehabilitated 2000 displaced families in 12 new locations as well as constructed 11 numbers of raised earthen flood shelter) ; livelihood restoration and livelihood promotion targeting the flood affected/vulnerable people, women empowerment through promotion of women SHGs, critical engagement with Government on the issues of right to land, right of the traditional forest dwellers, education and health.

  • Campaigning on safe drinking water with hand pumps (344 nos. with bacteria proof concrete platform) and ring wells (15 nos.) support to the marginalized people with special focus on the flood affected people. Repairing of hand pumps (64 nos.) and rising of hand pumps (400 nos.) has been accomplished during the period.

  • Water testing of source in 159 villages in Dhemaji District.

  • Campaigning on sanitation concentrating on low cost latrines. Training on low cost latrines has supplemented the process. So far 1496 low cost latrines have been constructed at community level in the period 1996 to 2003. In the process 105 temporary latrines have been constructed in the relief camps during the year 2003.

  • Promotion of “Jappi bank” (bamboo rain/sun cap) to ensure sustainable livelihood opportunity for 54 poor rural families. The 1, 00,000 jappis (rain Caps) generated by the craftsmen in the period 1994 to 1998 with little external loan (that they have successfully returned) fed several Districts through out Assam.

  • Formation of 1000 nos. of Self help group (SHG) during the period 1999 to 2003. Out of the 1000 groups 11 groups are formed with people with disability in the year 2002.

  • Livestock revolving fund to 947 women (involved in SHGs) at the rate of Rs.1200 per women in terms of kind. The 706 nos. of pigs and 564 nos. of goats provided to the community in the year 2001 has increased manifold attaining the figures 12000 and 2000 respectively. The revolving fund is presently managed by community (indigenous people’s group).

  • Rural community managed school “Brahmaputra Vidyalaya” established in 2001, to ensure quality education for the rural children which has reached 10th standard on 2010 with 507 students in total. Coordinating pre-project activity of Sarva Siksha Abhijaan Mission intensively at 9 panchayats in Dhemaji District and extensively for all the children of the district as district resource person in the year 2002.

  • Streamlining of local yarn eri (castor) silk and muga (golden thread cocoon) with the mainstream through AVANI, Pithoragarh in Uttarranchal.

  • Vocational training(weaving, cane and bamboo, low cost latrine construction, sand based agriculture, livestock rearing ,installation of treadle pumps) encompassing 2000 community people from the whole north east.

  • Demonstration on Bamboo curing within the premises to ensure longevity to its life span.

  • Para vet training for 50 rural youth from 50 remote villages of Dhemaji.

  • Awareness generation camp/training (preventive health with special focus on diarrhea and malaria, MCH, RCH, Disability, entrepreneurship development) encompassing 1500 local people during the period 1998 to 2003.

  • Promotion of CBOs through training and networking with the same from all over North East. During the period 1993 to 2003, 150 CBOs have been encompassed in the process. In the process 50 nos. of indigenous people’s group (Gaon Bikash Kebang, Karpunpuli Gaon Bikash Kini Kebang) have been trained and exposed on mainstream practices and state policies to empower them to asset their rights in their own initiative.

  • Campaigning against big dams with national and international networking in the year.

  • Campaigning against river linking with national and international networking in the year 2003.

  • Campaigning to influence state policy on basic human rights issue in relation to flood during the period 1999 to 2003.

  • Empowerment of CBOs/indigenous people’s group to campaign for effective implementation of state rural health policy in this part of the country during the period 2001 to 2003.

  • Empowerment of CBOs/indigenous people’s group to campaign for effective implementation of state primary education policy in 2 Districts in this part of the country during the period 2001 to 2003.

  • Advocating in favor of indigenous people at local administration level to secure their land right ensuring legal documents during the year 2002. The process has resulted in providing 50,000 pattas (land documents) to the indigenous people.

  • Advocating in favor of the indigenous people in Supreme Court of India against the illogical coerced eviction of indigenous people from forest land 2002. The process has resulted in Supreme Court’s intervention in the matter asking the state government to hold up eviction process.

  • Influencing policy in local level administration to ensure feasible and sustainable people oriented planning and utilization of rural development fund. The process has generated 260 nos. of grain bank by the initiative of the PRIs in the District, designing of 6 nos. of major watershed in Dhemaji District.

  • Highlighting of indigenous best practices at national and international level. The practices viz. houses on stilt, raised homestead with bamboo plinth, raised granary, country boats with enhanced technical viability and raised hand pumps have been recognized by the ministry of home affairs during the year 2003.

  • Logical back up to union of indigenous students union in movement in favor of indigenous people.

  • Promotion of “IRRI paddy” a post flood crops has been introduced (involving 1000 families) by the project in this part of the country, to revive the economical break down of the community out of flood, is presently been adopting by hundreds of families.
  • Providing country boat to the vulnerable and cut out community to ensure rescue with logical inputs to develop the practice of covering the same with tar for longevity of the boat has enhanced this very existing practice to a recommendable extent. 28 nos. of country boat has been provided to the community in vulnerable location during the period 1998 to 2002.

  • Generating of Duryug Samiti: to enhance the capacity of the vulnerable community to cope with flood through easy and immediate accessibility to tarpaulin, bamboo, ORS, Halogen as well as management of the same in community initiative.32 nos. of Duryug Samitis have been generated during the period 2002 to 2003.

  • RVC has generated a network (River Basin Friends) along with 600 individual/organization in 2003 to make the downstream people aware on the weather, river and flood situation of the upstream so that adequate measures can be adopted by the people in the downstream to mitigate damage.

  • The 2 nos. of engine boats have been intensively used in rescuing flood affected and flood vulnerable people to safer places and mobilization or relief during the year 2002 and 2003.

  • Regarding infrastructure development the project has so far generated 11numbers of flood shelter (raised platform) of the dimension 150ft. x 120 ft. x 18 ft. through food for work (FFW) and cash for work (CFW) to ensure safety to the life and belongings of the vulnerable people as well as to eliminate the sub- human conditions that the people have to live on in the time of flood emergency.

  • Apart from this RVC Akajan has constructed 30.0 kilometers of village road in the post flood session of the year 1998 and 36.0 kilometers in the post flood session of the year 2002 through food for works under its village construction program.

  • In the year 1998 RVC Akajan has provided supplementary feeding (suji, chatu, and molasses) to 10,000-children/ pregnant/ lactating mother through out the district from 4767 nos. of families for a period of 30 days.

  • In the year 2000 RVC Akajan has provided food support (rice, dal, M.Oil, salt) to 4250 nos. of families encompassing a population of 23450 nos. for a period of 1 month.

  • In the year 2002 RVC Akajan has provided food support (rice, dal, salt) for 2707 families encompassing a population of 14,986 nos. for a period of 7 days. In the same year 11,000 nos. of children/ lactating mother / pregnant women had been covered under supplementary nutrition program providing rice, dal, M.Oil and salt for a period of 45 days.

  • In the year 2003 1500 families have been covered under PH promotion and temporary shelter intervention at 32 villages in Sissiborgaon, Dhemaji ensuring accessibility of the marginalized affected to essential materials viz. water filter, sanitary napkins, washing soap, bathing soap bamboo pole, tarpaulins, ropes.

  • In the year 1998 the people of 2 washed out villages had been rehabilitated in initiative of RVC consisting of 58 and 48 nos. of families respectively. Livelihood generation for the affected people through accessibility to fishing net, yarn and vegetables seed is the area of intervention in the respective year.

  • In the year 2000 1204nos. of affected families had been rehabilitated in initiative of RVC in 12 clusters through food for work (FFW) Livelihood generation for the affected people through accessibility to fishing net, yarn and vegetables seed was taken in big dimension.

  • In the year 2001 RVC has supported 1500 members of women SHGs with revolving fund (in terms of kinds viz pigs, goats, poultry and duck) amounting up to Rs 1200.00/per beneficiary as an attempt to restore and promote livelihood of marginalized flood affected families of 26 chronically flood affected families. The women members receiving the revolving fund support has been refunding the amount to Gaon Bikash Kebang (Village Development Committee) and in turn the GBK has been promoting more livelihood actions targeting more and more families in distress.

  • In the year 2002, 100 numbers of Persons with disability has been organized in SHGs and with supported with revolving fund( in terms of kinds viz pig, goats, poultry, duck) to ensure accessibility to income generation of the one of the most marginalized section within the marginalized community. The members receiving the revolving fund support has been refunding the amount to Gaon Bikash Kebang (Village Development Committee) and in turn the GBK has been promoting more livelihood actions within the persons with disability.

  • In the year 2002 seventy five families have been supported with bamboos (35 numbers) and tarpaulins for shelter provision.

  • In the year 2003 RVC has encompassed 2000 families in its effort to generate livelihood opportunity for the flood people in Dhemaji District. The effort has concentrated on agro based support in terms of seed (mustard, pea, and boro paddy), organic fertilizer, organic insecticides; livestock support in terms of piggery, goatery, poultry, and Duckery; fishing net.

  • Promotion of organic farming in 32 villages in Dhemaji District targeting 1225 families in the year 2003.

  • Promotion of Kuroiler chicken at community level to enhance production and income generation. The introductory part has promoted 10000 nos. of Kuroiler chicken through out the District.

  • In the year 2003 RVC has installed 60 numbers of hand pumps with concrete platform in 45 flood affected villages.

  • In the year 2003, RVC supported 1300 severely flood affected families with under Cash for Work program enabling the families to earn Rs. 900.00 (15 working days X Rs 60.00).

  • In its effort to restore livelihood of the severely flood affected families of 32 villages RVC, in the year 2003 supported 1500 families. The process adopted was that the families were asked to choice 2 items amongst the following- Mustard, pea, Bodo paddy along with bio-fertilizers and insecticides; fishing-nets and piglets. In the process 475 families undertook mustard, 675 families’ pea, 75 families Bodo paddy, 200 families’ fishing-nets and pigs. Apart from this, 1650 families of the 32 villages were supported with vegetable seed and spade.

  • During the year 2003, RVC provided 2300 numbers of tarpaulins, 3000 numbers of bamboos, 174 numbers of bamboo-pole, 7500 metres of binding-rope, 20 numbers of nipple-pipe( to raise hand-pumps), 1500 numbers of water-filter(plastic), 950000 numbers of halozane tablets, 15600 numbers of ORS sachets, 1650 Kgs of bleaching and 3300 Kgs of lime, 9000 pieces of bathing soap and 3000 number of laundry soap, 3000 numbers of sanitary napkin packets( 10 pcs. per packet), within the flood affected population of 114 villages of 20 panchayats, 4 Blocks, 2 districts. Apart from these in the same year RVC constructed 105 numbers of temporary latrines in Government recognized relief camps and organized and organized 10 mobile health camps at 10 flood affected locations.

RVC in Arunachal Pradesh (1989-1993)

RVC in Arunachal Pradesh (1989-1993):

  • Campaigning on safe drinking water in 80 villages of Upper Subansiri District.
  • Water testing of the source, in 300 villages through out Arunachal Pradesh has been realized during the period 1989 to 1992.
  • Campaigning on sanitation concentrating on low cost latrines. Training on low cost latrines has supplemented the process. So far 3000 low cost latrines have been constructed at community level in the period 1996 to 2003.
  • Educational opportunity for 10,000 rural poor children (6 to 14 years) through the school established in the year 1989.
  • Vocational training (weaving, tailoring, typing, cane and bamboo, solar electrification, low cost latrines construction, geodesic dome construction) for 1500 youth of different villages.
  • Technology promotion camps in 5 circles (block head quarter).
  • Construction of 10 nos. of geodesic dome (community hall) with support from DST. The structure has been later adopted by the government of Arunachal Pradesh for construction of teacher’s quarter and thus another 10 structure has been raised and used.
  • Installation of 80 units of solar lanterns, 3 units of solar water purifiers, 1 unit of solar water heater in the remote villages during the period 1990 to 1992.
  • Survey and setting up of 3 micro hydel in collaboration with government where the expertise available with RVC on the subject has been used.
  • Promotion of fire retardant (palm leaves) and termite proof (cane) housing materials.
  • Promotion of bamboo cement for construction of structures to overcome the difficulty in using bricks and cements in hills. The feasibility and sustainability of the technology has been best reflected by the rain water harvesting tank of 20,000 liters which has been serving the purpose till date from early nineties.
  • Promotion of non-erodable mud plaster.
  • Promotion of Ferro cements technology.
  • Promotion of pre fabricated structures: To combat the cost ineffectiveness of RCC construction pre fabricated bricks has been promoted. Houses with pre fabricated pillars ad walls have been designed by the local people of Daporijo. Pre fabricated drainage channel for minor irrigation and sanitation have been designed and used by the local people.
  • High efficient wood burning stove to ensure conservation of energy. In the process, 1000 nos. of stoves have been provided to the rural people at subsidized rate.
  • Promotion of mineralized salt for cattle licks.
  • Horticulture planning for whole Arunachal Pradesh which has attributed towards orange production and in turn upliftment of the rural technology.

Monday, February 22, 2010

About Us


Rural Volunteers Centre is one of the leading grass root organizations of North East India committed towards promoting self-sustaining development initiatives, determined by people’s needs, choices and priorities and capitalizing on local skills and resources.

The works of RVC mainly focus on promoting appropriate technology, creating opportunities and spaces for learning through practices to the local people, value addition to the traditional livelihood practices, educating policy and promoting advocacy works.


Mr. Ravindranath founder of RVC came to North East (India) in 1989 with years long experiences of working on ranges of social issues, transfer of low cost technologies and HRD in remote Rajasthan and Jharkhand as a member of the SWRC, Tilonia family . The objective being to North east was to optimize the development process through HRD and technology transfer; capitalizing on engineering specialization in rural energy and management specialization in community development. Accordingly from 1989 to 1992 Mr. Ravindranath worked on the themes in Upper Subansiri District of Arunachal Pradesh.

In the year 1992 a group of young people from Akajan village of Dhemaji District, Assam asked Mr. Ravindranath to come and work in the flood affected/vulnerable Dhemaji District. The request of those young dynamic people as well as sufferings of the flood affected population (rural ST and SC people) inhabiting Upper Brahmaputra River basin, low human development indexes and low per capita state’s investment in the region had influenced Mr. Ravindranath to shift the core area of operation to the rural Dhemaji and Lakhimpur of Assam. Thus the Rural Volunteers Centre (RVC) came into being and since been working in the region focusing on the themes DISASTER RISK REDUCTION, FOOD AND LIVELIHOOD SECURITY, EDUCATION, COMMUNITY HEALTH, DISASTER RISK REDUCTION, ADDRESSING IMMEDIATE BASIC NEEDS OF FLOOD AFFECTED POPULATION, WOMEN EMPOWERMENT, PROMOTING GRASS ROOT ORGANIZATIONS, BUILDING ALLIANCE , POLICY ADVOCACY etc.

We started our works in the year 1993 in Sissiborgaon Development Block, setting up a small unit, with help of the local people, in a community donated land (part of a graveyard) in Akajan, a tribal village in Dhemaji District in North bank of River Brahmaputra. We started our works in partnership with the ST, SC and the other underprivileged sections of the community in Sissiborgaon block of Dhemaji District and during our 15 years of journey we have managed to reach the underprivileged sections of the community inhabiting in 12 Blocks of 3 Districts in Assam in particular and through out all the 8 northeastern states in general.


• An epidemic free just society with appropriate technology and self-reliance.


• Empowerment of women and indigenous groups to assert their rights through action on the factors causing denial to justice.

• Actively engage with Government to address gaps in systems and policies in management of river structures and epidemics through sustainable community empowerment.

• Appropriation of rural technologies and practices through participation of the community to ensure better and secured living opportunity.

• Strengthening of coping mechanism of vulnerable people with disaster through empowerment of community based organization and systems/practices prevalent at community level.


• Mutual respect

Each and every member of RVC believes that every individual has his own potentialities as well as limitations and we should respect every individual to ensure an environment so that everyone’s potentiality bloom to the fullest extent and limitations are overcome in their own initiatives.

• Honest and transparent

The inception and existence of RVC is to work for the community i.e. we have choose a path where our identity is our work not we (the human being). We deeply feel as our existence and identity is determined by our works we should be honest and transparent with our works (performing honestly to our fullest potentiality as well as expressing honestly our performances and limitations) to ourselves as well to others.

• Courage and determination

We have worked out our path to realize our vision. We know that the path is tough and also full of uncertainties. It is obvious that there will be ups and downs, pleasant moments and unpleasant moments, achievements and failures, integration and disintegration, togetherness and separateness. But we have to be courageous enough and determined to face every adverse situation and set the things positively to ensure that we realize our vision.

• Simplicity in congruence with community

We believe changes (development) are inevitable. We are to act as a catalyst to realize the process fast and in people’s choice (but inconformity with the national main stream dynamics). To act as a catalyst we believe that the people should accept us as one of them. So we are determined to adopt and maintain simplicity as the people for whom we work lives with so that community feels we are one of them.


• Live and work in close proximity with the rural community.

• Create a space for creative and constructive personal growth - not discriminating against caste, religion or political thinking.

• Ensure gender equality within the organization.

• Have an intrinsic belief in the democratic political process and not follow partisan political agendas or include partisan politicians on the board.

• Judge the worth of people by their willingness and ability to learn - not by their paper qualifications.

• Believe in the law of the land and have a commitment towards social justice through non-violent means.

• Have respect for collective, traditional knowledge, beliefs, wisdom and practices of the community.

• Be committed to the preservation of natural resources and not endorse processes that destroy, exploit or abuse natural resources.

• Use appropriate technologies that sustain the community and not encourage technologies that deprive people of their livelihoods.

• Set a personal example in adhering to the code of conduct.