Almost half of the Indian population lives below the poverty line. Especially in South India millions of people constantly struggle to survive. Furthermore, in the coastal regions in the southeast of the country, a flood disaster has affected many of these very poor people and destroyed their whole existence.
The Kolping Society in South India gives the people hope, particularly those belonging to the lower castes. The majority of the more than 20,000 Kolping members belong to this poorest class of population. Therefore sustainable poverty alleviation is the most important concern of the Kolping activities on this subcontinent.
The fight against poverty by promoting small productive projects has turned out to be particularly successful. By granting small credits Kolping helps people to start small businesses, e.g. keeping of poultry, production of dried fish and commercialization, small sewing workshops, production of chili powder and other spices and much more. Often a start-up help of 40 Euro is sufficient for a family to build up a decent living. With such a small investment aid a family can create a permanent basis for their life and thereby find a way out of the grievous poverty.
The project is also an important instrument for the promotion of help for self-help because each beneficiary makes his own contribution. This contribution is made through a joint effort with other beneficiaries by saving money together. The Kolping families are organized in savings groups. Each member saves the amount of 50 cent per month. This amount corresponds to a daily wage and is a lot of money for many people. If the amount saved on the shared account amounts to 100 Euro, the Kolping Society awards twice the amount (200 Euro) as a grant. From this capital, interest-bearing credits are allowed to the poorest families who start up their businesses with these loans.
Mainly women are organized in savings groups. They are ambitious and reliable and invest the profits of their small enterprises in their family: for better nutrition, school education for the children, better housing conditions. Participating in the small credit program means for them a step towards emancipation: they administer the money and guarantee that the amount to be saved will be met. They also have a say in how to use the money. They often start a small business or animal husbandry with the amount saved. In this way they improve their position and the living conditions for their families thus actively participate in forming society.
In the past years the Kolping Society helped many families with a credit. Who received a support like this is now no longer in a hopeless situation but has experienced that you can improve your life with your own efforts. A small contribution has a great impact. The Kolping Society of India wants to expand the project thus making a more substantial contribution to sustainable poverty alleviation.
Project no.: 6102
Pax-Bank eG Köln
Sozial- und Entwicklungshilfe des Kolpingwerkes e.V.
Kto-Nr. 15 640 014
BLZ 370 601 93
IBAN: DE97 3706 0193 0015 6400 14