Brief Profile of Development Alternatives

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  • Topic: Self-help groups for mental health, Jhansi, Bundelkhand
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  • Published : April 2, 2013
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CSS performance report
BRIEF PROFILE OF DEVELOPMENT ALTERNATIVES GROUP

Development Alternatives, India, is a non-profit research, development and consultancy organisation established in 1983 under the Societies Registration Act. It fosters the new relationship in the people, technology and environment interactions needed to attain the goal of sustainable development. The Institution Systems Branch, including the Social Action Group (SAG) (refer Annex Ii) Development Alternatives Information Network (DAINET), the Training Systems Unit, the Communication Unit and the Poorest Area Civil Society Programme (PACS) (refer Annex III) provide a range of services to the environment and development community in India. The Environment Systems Branch designs environment and development management strategies at various geographic scales and levels of detail. Experimental cum demonstration projects are also undertaken in the field. The range of field studies and projects include Environmental Impact Assessment and Analysis, Environmental Management Plans, Environmental and Social Policies and Procedures for Corporate organisations, Community development, Food Security in tribal areas, Rehabilitation and Resettlement, Pollution Prevention, Cleaner Production, Waste Management, Natural Resources Management using GIS & Remote sensing, Income Generation through Micro-enterprises and Biodiversity Conservation. The Technology Systems Branch focuses on designing and developing environmentally sound and appropriate technologies in close collaboration with the other branches. Several technology packages in Shelter, Domestic Energy, Handmade Paper, Textiles, Pottery, etc. have already been disseminated and others are in various stages of development. The sister organisation, Technology and Action for Rural Advancement (TARA) undertakes production and dissemination of the technologies. Another off-shoot TARAhaat Information and Marketing Services Ltd (TARAhaat) is India’s premier social enterprise, using Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) to deliver a broad spectrum of services and products designed for the rural and peri-urban citizens of India. TARAhaat delivers its services through a network of franchised community and business centres owned by individual entrepreneurs (refer Annex IV). A highly competent and motivated staff of more than 400 professional and support staff in diverse fields ranging from Anthropology, Sociology, Economics, Forestry, Ecology, Geology, Engineering and Analytical Chemistry contribute to the assignments undertaken. Professionals for each assignment are carefully selected to provide trans-disciplinary inputs effectively. Besides R & D workshops, support is also drawn from a well equipped Computer Unit, an accredited Information Unit and Geomatics Facility. The Environmental Monitoring Facility can undertake soil, water and air analyses. The Regional Office in Bangalore in the past seven years of its operation has built up considerable expertise in the field of low-cost construction using appropriate technologies and local materials as well as in income generation activities. The Regional Office looks after the operations in Karnataka and other southern states. The Regional Office in Jhansi looks after the operations in the Bundelkhand region. It has shown excellent results on ground during the past four years in wasteland development, natural regeneration, soil & moisture conservation, community irrigation systems and income-generation activities.

An Appropriate Technology Centre has been established in Orchha, Madhya Pradesh. This Centre is a unique experiment in design and dissemination of appropriate technologies in the Bundelkhand region. A Field Station is operational in Tumkur, Karnataka to take up wastelands regeneration and Watershed management in the region. Development Alternatives has established several mechanisms to bring staff directly into the...
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