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Gifting Prosperity: A Tale from Samuday

February 14, 2020

In India, a very distinct and common memory from everyone’s childhood happens to be of mothers making sure no bowl went back empty to the neighbour’s. In return for some delicacy that they had shared with us, she made sure the emotion was sincerely reciprocated with a homemade delicacy of her own.


The culture of gifting and sharing is an innate emotion in our country. It is what lends warmth and cordiality to our social conduct. It comes straight from the heart. The earliest recorded instance of gifting dates back to ancient times and according to the Bhagvad Gita, the practice of ​dana ​or bequeathing gifts was considered holy and auspicious.


The emotions and earthiness of human interactions are apparent across communities in rural India. The simple idea of sowing hard work and reaping benefits still remains ingrained within the psyche and practices of rural communities. Sharing opportunities and supporting neighbours, getting together and contributing towards the betterment of lives, is the essence of rural life even when access to information and opportunities are limited in certain areas.


While utilising the culture of Gifting to create a Socioeconomic model of development for Rural India, HCL Samuday has initiated a strategic tool to build a well rounded, independent and sustainable community of people. This community is trained to generate employment from start to end, with the help of the emotion of gifting, under the livelihood segment of their CSR initiative in Hardoi.


Goat farming intervention, a system of goat rearing, helps in building a community of independent, employed and empowered villagers, from existing Self Help Groups (SHG). The cycle starts by inducting a cluster of members with the necessary training in goat rearing.


Before Goat induction to beneficiary, HCL Samuday assures their contribution of two female goats of six months each, irrespective of any breed. After that, two goats (10-12 months young) and one buck (in a group of 20 beneficiaries each) of Barbari breed are inducted. Next step is calving and passing of one productive asset i.e., three month’s young female offspring goat to the other needy members of the women SHG and this gifting goes on until every beneficiary is done with the passing of productive assets to other beneficiaries of the SHGs.


This way, the end of the cycle brings forth enhanced livelihood opportunities, improved economic situation and the emotion of being a close-knit community that helps in growing and thriving together, without the involvement of any third-party mediator.


For Pinki and Suman, Goatery intervention and the gifting module have helped them turn their lives around entirely. Pinki, from Motikheda Village in Hardoi, was already trained in goat farming. She helped Suman by inducting her into the process and gifting her an off-spring to build her own unit. Both these women were able to uplift their economic conditions by helping other women through the gifting module.


“I want all the women around me to know that you need to get out of your houses, it will not help you meet new people but will help increase your knowledge”, Pinki says while striving to work towards her and her children’s futures.

For Suman, who hails from the same village, life is all about confidence. She grows everyday along with her SHG sisters.


“Goatry is not only helping me save for my daughters’ future but is also helping us women gain what we somewhere lost in our childhood. We have the opportunity today to help our children create a difference in their future,” she says.


Together with the concept of gifting, a sense of belongingness and community building is instilled. When a member gains from goat farming and passes on the knowledge to the next member, a cycle is completed. This system generates conversations around the need to be self-dependent, ways to improve economic opportunities and builds
confidence. It reinforces the culture of friendliness and warmth while helping them generate adequate revenue to uplift their life state. This initiative shows that with the right thought and intent, simple acts of warmth and kindness can be used to facilitate thriving economic opportunities.

Training and Extension

Agriculture is a dynamic sector that deals with specialized knowledge which is ever changing. HCL Samuday regularly makes associated farmers aware of latest developments through Training and Extension intervention. The farmers are empowered to address existing issues and mitigate and adapt for future challenges.

With the objective of bringing agriculture technologies at farmers’ doorstep by establishing a ‘Center of Excellence’ in Uttar Pradesh, HCL Samuday is setting up Center for Agriculture Technology Transfer (CATT) in Hardoi district. It shall act as a ‘single window’ / ‘one stop support system’ aligning various interventions of state department of Agriculture with HCL Foundation as an intermediary and farmers as end users in a learning, decision making and problem-solving exercise.

Nutrition Garden

Nutrition Garden is a low cost, scientific model of home garden organically producing a variety of nutritious vegetables and fruits throughout the year. The primary objective of promoting nutrition gardens is to make ½ kg of fresh vegetables available for daily consumption to rural households. Secondary objectives include reduction in daily expenditure of HHs and increase in the consumption of green vegetables for improved nutrition.

2,714 households have benefitted by adopting a Nutrition Garden.

Community Mobilization and Institution Building

Interventions aimed at mobilizing community and facilitating institution creation lend long-term sustainability to the efforts for agriculture development.

     a. Farmer Clubs

Farmer Clubs are formed with the objective of propagating the idea of collective, uniting farmers in groups which work for the benefit of their community. 199 such clubs established so far under this intervention are providing a platform for knowledge dissemination and better market linkages.

        b. Farmer Producer Organisation

HCL Foundation is the promoting agency of Hardoi Kisan Producer Company Limited (HKPCL), a Farmer Producer Organization constituted in 2017 to address challenges faced by farming community in the project area. Comprising of 2,350 shareholders and governed by an 11-member board of directors, HKPCL registered a turnover of ₹ 6.85 crores in last financial year (2019-20).

       c. Vegetable Aggregation Points

Ensuring market is a crucial part of vegetable supply chain. To facilitate better linkages with market, 7 vegetable aggregation points have been set up across 3 blocks and regular communication is made to enable farmers to choose and opt for most suitable option. Realising better prices for produce, 917 Tonnes of vegetables, worth ₹ 1.30 crores, got aggregated at these centres in 2019-20.

       d. Farm Mechanization

Through Farm Mechanization, focus is on increasing income of farmers by improving affordability and accessibility of machines for precision agriculture. It is aimed at reducing farmers’ cost of cultivation and easing farm operations. Carried out in an entrepreneurial model, thus far 3,249 farms have been supported with advanced agricultural machinery and development of 45 entrepreneurs has been facilitated.

Crop Diversification

Due to lack of awareness and perishable nature of produce, few farmers practice vegetable cultivation. Crop Diversification intervention aims to bring sustainable income enhancement by adoption of diversified crop practices. HCL Samuday is pushing this agenda and the concurrent efforts made have engaged 13,500+ farmers so far in vegetable production.


After successful response of vegetable cultivation, various add-ons in Crop Diversification have been introduced so that farmers having disparate needs may opt for most suitable cropping pattern. These include –

  • Nano Orchard- a small area of land ranging from 840–1680 sqm is devoted exclusively for cultivation of fruit crops like Guava, Papaya, Banana, Apple, Ber and Thai Lime (seedless) along with vegetables taken as intercrop. 425 farmers have successfully established Nano Orchards.
  • Floriculture - promoting flower cultivation, HCL Samuday is propagating better practices and solving farmers’ erstwhile problem of unavailability of good variety. Marigold cultivation is being promoted under floriculture in project area.
  • VASUNDRA -Village Action for Sustainable Utilization of Natural Resource and Demonstration of Resilient Agriculture (VASUNDRA) has been initiated to enhance productivity of degraded fallow lands having high pH value. Adopting scientific methods of land reclamation through cultivation of resilient crops like Lemon Grass and Palmarosa combined with PH resistant horticulture crops like Amla, Ber and Lemon, so far 140 acres of land has been reclaimed.

Traditional Crop Promotion

Traditional Crop Promotion intervention focuses on training and demonstration of traditional crop farmers (Maize, Paddy, Wheat, Urad etc.) and bringing them under Package of Practices (PoP) based production system to increase productivity and adopt better crop management practices.

HCL Samuday has worked to enhance productivity by adopting soil and nutrient management, land development and institutional building for effective market linkages. 26,000+ farmers are currently engaged through this intervention and have adopted better practices on their farm.