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HCL’s Samuday project is changing lives

July 17, 2018

HCL Foundation has been actively working to bring economic and social development to rural areas through a sustainable and scalable model. In 2015, HCL Foundation launched its flagship program – HCL Samuday. In collaboration with the Central and state governments, local communities, NGOs, knowledge institutions and allied partners, today HCL Samuday is helping rural populace in identifying key challenges and overcoming them through innovative solutions. The Foundation has introduced several interventions across fields such as education, health, agriculture, livelihood and WASH (water, sanitation & hygiene) in selected villages of India.

HCL Samuday has been actively providing immense support to people living in rural hinterlands with a focus on sustainable community development. The project currently covers 164 gram-panchayats including over 90,000 households, impacting around 6 lakh people, in three blocks of Hardoi district in Uttar Pradesh – Kachhauna, Behandar and Kothawanin.

For the agriculture sector, HCL Samuday has created mobilized groups for farmers to increase their income by 25 per cent. These groups are designed to provide in-depth knowledge about scientific farming practices through training programs at every cropping stage. Soil testing with the help of Govt. labs to understand the nutrient value of the soil and calculate the input required, nursery management, integrated pest management, accounting techniques to help farmers take farming as a business, among others are some of the key training programs. HCLSamuday has also introduced novel concepts like Nutrition Garden and Bori Bagicha to help farmers save their household income.

Speaking of education, Samuday has been continuously working with a vision to ensure quality education for every child and provide them with an effective learning environment wherein they can learn and hone their existing skills. It has launched ICT-based intervention Shiksha and community mobilization-based intervention Transition to help teachers deliver better learning experiences to students. Happy School, another intervention that takes care of the availability of the necessary infrastructure and its optimal utilization for making sure that an effective learning environment exists. Later they came up with Shiksha+, an intervention which is playing a key role in eradicating illiteracy.

Under the Health vertical, Samuday’s focus is to mitigate infant mortality rate and maternal mortality rate while giving access to primary healthcare services across communities. Interventions like Nurse Mentor, Staff Nurse, Mobile Mentoring Van, among others aim to build the capacity of frontline workers. They have also organized Screening Camps followed by Nutrition Camps, which work towards solving problems of malnutrition.

Contributing to the infrastructure sector, HCL Samuday is striving to provide electricity in areas lacking access and ensures a non-disruptive supply of electricity in health centres and schools. For the same, they have set up solar mini-grids and installed roof-top solar panels. Besides, when speaking of livelihood, Samuday is working hard to ensure that all marginal households have an alternate source of income apart from their existing jobs. This is done by strengthening the existing supply chain of agri-allied income generating activities and strengthening women institutions. They have also established individual and group-based business enterprises at the local level for sustained employment and skill upgradation of youth to ensure sustained wage or self-employment.

Under WASH, Samuday aims to ensure clean villages and access to clean drinking water for everyone. They are following a Community-led Total Sanitation strategy to motivate households to build and use toilets. They have also made an Open Defecation Elimination Plan and executed in close coordination with local government officials to achieve germ-free environment across communities.

With all such initiatives, HCL Samuday is working towards bringing sustainability at the grass-roots level and achieve a pollution-free clean India. The aim is to better peoples’ present and future and eventually taking villages of India to great heights. Hopefully, this initiative will soon touch millions of lives across India and help them live a better life in the future.

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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.