LSO learns how to fund community projects

Not only have they fixed a major problem, they now know how to win funding for others
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A section of road that used to be vulnerable
March 2015, Gilgit-Baltistan: The Union Council Thallay is the most remote high-altitude valley in all of Gilgit-Baltistan. It doesn’t have a single town, market, or even a shop. To get any services, medical attention, or even supplies, the residents must travel 32 km to Khaplu, the nearest big town. In summer, where the single link road snakes along the river Thallay, it is often flooded, cutting off the community of almost 13,000 people, for days. Not anymore!

When the AKRSP helped to revive the Local Support Organisation, and helped them organise a baseline study as part of their effort to develop their five-year Village Development plans, the first and unanimous priority of all villages was to improve that road access.

They proposed as a solution to build a protective wall alongside the part of the road that is usually flooded in summer. This would reduce the risk of soil erosion and curtail further damage to their single access jeep road.

The DPG team carried out a feasibility study that found that the 300-ft protective wall would cost 670,000 rupees in total.

Of this the EU-funded DPG project agreed to cover 450,000 rupees, as long as the local community covered the rest, mainly by contributing their labour and materials.

The local road authorities were happy to supervise the work of the local community, and indeed were so impressed by their efforts that they have also agreed to implement two other infrastructure projects – a footbridge and link road – identified by the community in their Village Development Plan.

For other priorities, the LSO is now reaching out to others.

The DPG project has also provided community leadership and project writing skills, and the LSO has been using these to seek funding from other donors.

Already the Rural Support Programmes Network (RSPN) has agreed to rehabilitate three irrigation channels that had been destroyed by heavy rainfalls.

Fact Box

Project:
Deepening Participatory Governance in Gilgit-Baltistan

Total budget:
EUR 830,000

EU Contribution:
EUR 750,000

Duration:
June 2013 – March 2016

Beneficiaries:
100,000 persons of which 50% include women, poor and marginalised groups

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Under supervision, the community provides the labour and resources the materials
“The training programme increased my understanding about how to organise and mobilise the community, how to increase savings, how to write proposals, highlight issues, and submit resolutions. All this has been tremendously important for us.”

Anwer Ali, Member LSO Thallay




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