Sahakarmi Samaj is a Nepali Non-Governmental organization committed for the process oriented empowerment approach and sustainable development. It was established in 1997 by the experienced professionals committed in the field of community empowerment, human rights, peace and reconciliation and organizational development. SS was registered in district administration office Surkhet and affiliated with SWC Kathmandu.
SS has been working in the areas of community governance, organizational development, human right promotion and sustainable livelihood. SS has implemented various programs to strengthen the marginalized communities in targetted areas over the past 20 years with the support of a range of international donors, including ICCO Co-operation, in p SHEP, Irish Aid, Lutheran World Federation, the World Food Program, Mercy Corps, and Development Fund Norway. SS believes that if an appropriate environment will be provided by building their capacity, developing their leadership and critical consciousness building, they will be able to claim their rights and perform their duties properly.
Work Areas in South West Nepal
The organisation has been operating in South Western Nepal in a number of districts including Banke, Kanchanpur, Bardiya, Kailali and Jajarkot. It targets disadvantaged communities such as tribal villages or migrant villages and the facilitators spend 3 years living amongst the villagers, in order to facilitate capacity building.
Implementing the FEST Approach
SS usually works for three years directly with each community group and the support is individually tailored to the specific groups. E.g. of change within villages would be that after SS facilitation, groups would:
- be capable of accessing local government resources to get toilets built, gravel for roads etc, conduct collective farming to increase a communal fund;
- used to fund various village needs e.g. hospital visits, school fees, buying seedlings etc,
- understand the need to build sustainable local resources e.g. planting trees.
Once these grassroots groups are well established, Sahakarmi’s emphasis shifts from facilitating the community groups, to establishing a number of local and regional networking organisations, which will then assist the community groups in their dealings with government and other agencies and advocate necessary policy changes.