The strategy is to increase the capability of women from the community network to demand entitlements and engage with the Panchayati Raj Institutions for better participatory planning. Such an enhanced participation of the community in local planning and monitoring of entitlements ensures an active involvement of the Panchayat thereby leading to better implementation of schemes and improved service delivery. To strengthen the process, a group of motivated individuals from the community, known as Local Resource Group (LRG) are selected and trained in aspects of local governance and development schemes for providing the anchor role in the PRI- CBO convergence process. The sustainability of this process is ensured by establishing institutional platforms with representatives from the community institutions and gram panchayat to promote effective dialogue between the two grassroot agencies. Experienced CDS Chairpersons from Kerala are sent as mentors to the states to work with the community.
For implementing the model, Kudumbashree NRO has evolved a set of tools for participatory assessment and planning by engaging SHGs with the constitutionally mandated local governance system (Panchayati Raj institutions). These tools, which are process oriented in nature, help in developing a strong community cadre and building capacities of local institutions for improving the reach and quality of public service delivery. The tools which are called Participatory Assessment of Entitlement (PAE), Entitlement Access Plan (EAP) and Gram Panchayat Poverty Reduction Plan (GP2RP) are used by the SHG households for understanding and documenting gaps in entitlement access, planning for its access entitlements and undertaking joint consultative activities with Gram Panchayats (GP) for eradicating poverty at the village level. These tools help in generating a collective energy and a conducive atmosphere for the PRI and CBO to work together for village development. At the same time the entire process capacitates the local institutions to meet the development needs of the village.
Outcome of the participatory planning exercises
At the end of the above participatory planning exercises, GP2RP which is the comprehensive demand plan prepared by the community network is submitted to the Gram Panchayat. The plan is discussed during Gram Sabha and necessary components are then added to the Gram Panchayat Development Plan (GPDP). To strengthen and institutionalize the interaction between Panchayati Raj Institutions and Community Based Organizations, Kudumbashree NRO forms Gram Panchayat Coordination Committee (GPCC), an institutional platform set up at the Gram Panchayat level for better coordination between PRI and CBO in matters related to planning and service delivery.
KEY COMPONENTS UNDER CONVERGENCE PROJECT