Mukti (organisation)

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MUKTI
File:MuktiLogo.png
MUKTI Official logo
MottoLet Us Serve the Needy
Formation2003
Typenon-profit organisation
FocusHealth, Education, Agriculture, Livelihood, Environment and Rights
HeadquartersKolkata, India
Area served
Sundarbans
Membership
Volunteer
Official language
English, Bengali, Hindi
President
Sankar Halder
Staff
150+
Websitelink

MUKTI (Bengali: মুক্তি "Liberation"), is a registered not-for-profit Socioeconomics development trust, working for the needy people in Sundarbans (Indian part), West Bengal and other parts of India as well, for uplifting of the grassroots who are in penury, social exclusion and myriad discrimination. MUKTI is registered under the Government of India Trust Act Section 64. MUKTI, which means liberation, was founded in 2003 and officially registered in 2005. More than 500 volunteers of MUKTI [1] are working in UNESCO declared World Heritage site Sundarbans region of India in the areas of health, education, agriculture, livelihood, environment and rights.

Works[edit]

Mukti [2] supports and implement various projects across India. Their activities include several programs under the focus area of health, education, agriculture, livelihood, environment and rights, including disaster relief,[3] medical camps during disaster and general free medical camps for villagers; helping students with text books under Book Bank project, provide tutoring to the poor students in villages, sponsoring talented but needy students, providing technical training to village youth to facilitate their job, computer learning among village students; train, motivate and help farmers to follow organic farming (Sustainable Agriculture Movement);[4] help village women to have their own organic kitchen garden, ensuring supply-chain established for organic farmers; creating and train women entrepreneurs based on microfinance principle; creating and distributing coconut seedlings to villagers in large scale and maintain those, large-scale plantation of flower and fruit plants; helping villagers for Right to Information Act, 2005 (RTI Act. 2005) and establishing rights for them etc. Mukti is registered with Government of India under Section 64. Any donation to Mukti is deductible under Section 80G of the Income Tax Act of India.

MUKTI FOR COVID-19

0-35% of the people around Sunderban area go to nearby districts for earning their living. After this lock-down due to COVID-19, many people got stuck in their respective job locations and were not in a position to send money to their families. Some people struggled and managed to return to their homes after few days but they were unable to get their due amount from their respective contractors. Many people were in a dire situation and was not having enough food at their home. MUKTI purchased all vegetables from the respective farmers and started selling the vegetables in cart to local residents of Purba Sridharpur, Nagendrapur Gram Panchayat, Uttar Kankandighi, Paschim Jota, distributed masks, conducted food distribution and relief programs. Read more here.

COVID-19 HELLO BETA

Providing Oxygen support through concentrators, food (cloud kitchen concept), medicine and tele-medicine support in Kolkata [1] in the tough times of Covid 19 to help patients survive specially the old who are locked in homes due to chronic ailments or age issues and burdened by social an economic factors operate and regulate such that to make it accessible. Click https://hellobeta.in/about-us for more.

MUKTI FOR AMPHAN

The Sundarban region in the lower Bengal coast was hit with an extremely severe cyclone Amphan. Amphan’s landfall coincided with the high tide on the afternoon of May 20, 2020, resulting in breaching of the embankment and widespread flooding. The water breached the bunds and flooded the lands, causing massive damage to property and agriculture. Sundarbans, the world’s largest active delta, is home to more than 5 million people (in India), many of whom are subsistence farmers and fisherfolks.

MUKTI started working intensively with farmers in the region in 2003 and thus helped the community during Cyclone Alia and Cyclone Bulbul as well. We need your support to stand by the people of Sundarbans, who are already dealing with the loss of income due to the COVID related lockdown. In relief, Mukti provided seeds to farmers, constructed a broken river bund at g-plot, provided rations at Kemuri village, conducted medical camps at herembogopalpur, also providing relief at Uttar Gopalpur Gram panchayat, Shibrampur Gram Panchayat, Moynapara, Mukti also provided food in some areas of sundarban. Read the whole report here.

MUKTI FOR YAAS

This year (2021) witnessed Yaas and Sunderban people were the usual victims again. Hence MUKTI again came forward to tackle the time of discomfort and pain through provision of food, medical kits, shelter materials(tarpaulin sheets), cattle feed at near about 7 block - Basanti, Gosaba, Mathurpur, Kolaghat, Pingla, Binpur. The fight is tough but MUKTI is trying to make the HEALER program more and more sustainable. For more please visit https://muktiweb.org/?s=yaas

History[edit]

Year Activity
2003 Group of young people from Sundarbans grouped together under the leadership of Sankar Halder and decided to giving back something to society as society helped them to be what they were. It was started with an educational project, namely Book Bank where village students get free text books.
2005 Registered as trust as per Government India Trust Act. Date of registration is 9 March (celebrated as Foundation Day every year) 2005. Another important project was started to provide low cost toilets (Sanitation Project) among the villagers of Sundarbans.
2006 First time organizational funding received and started another educational project, namely, Coaching Centre (currently known as MUKTI Support School) to supplement the education received in school as most village schools run with very limited number teachers and resources.
2007 Village Computer centre project started at Kakdwip in South 24 Parganas and Guptipara in Hooghly District. MUKTI also launched a new website which is much more informative and provides regular updates to all donors and beneficiaries.
2008 MUKTI USA chapter (MUKTI for Social Development (MSD)) started. This is an independent organization, shares same philosophy and principles as MUKTI. Currently, known as AiducateNow.
2009 MUKTI took a significant role on supporting relief work of thousands of flood victims due to devastating Cyclone Aila.
2010 In post Cyclone Aila period MUKTI worked along with local bodies to remove the salinity of the soil in Sundarbans area as quick as possible. Specific process designed for quicker removal of salinity and making the field again fertile for agriculture. Organic farming project also started with initial training of farmers in TOT (Train of the Trainers) model.
2011 Coconut project started with multi-fold benefits. Coconut is the natural growth trees in this tropical climate of Sundarbans with multiple benefits such as it helps to reduce soil erosion, thereby strengthening the river banks; provides means of livelihood for local villagers from its fruit and leaves.
2012 Pilot project MUKTI Community Development Fund (MCDF) started to make women entrepreneur based on microfinance principle.
2013 MUKTI started RTI (Right to Information Act, 2005) project to help villagers to solve their lots of issues with local governments and provide law assistance.
2015 MUKTI started HEALER exhibition in Sundarbans to bring people of Sundarbans closer to its donors and outer world. In this exhibition people of Sundarbans showcase their work based on 6 themes of MUKTI and their rich cultural, sports and food heritage.
2016 MIT (MUKTI Institute of Technology) started to provide vocational and job-oriented training to the youth of Sundarbans.
2017 MUKTI Fresh started. MUKTI Fresh is a supply chain organization who helps to bridge the gap between organic farmers and its customer. MUKTI again revamped their website entirely to make it modern and started accepting online donations through website.
2018 MUKTI introduced Community Business (MCB) model. Under MCB, three new initiatives, namely Cloud Kitchen, Mukti Craft and Mukti Beverage (Muktodhara brand) started.
2019 (Jan) 104 farmers have received PGS (Participatory Guarantee Systems) – India National Standards for Organic Production certificate.
2020 onwards Hello Beta for providing oxygen concentrators, food, medicines to help Covid 19 affected victims https://hellobeta.in/.
2021(May-) post Cyclone Yaas relief to provide support through ration, health camps, tarpaulins https://muktiweb.org/?s=yaas

Focus Areas/Programs[edit]

MUKTI works in 6 major focus areas. It is called as HEALER. MUKTI works as healer to society to help distressed people in society.

H - Health, Water and Sanitation for improving health and water provision and sanitation services (Projects are Medical Camps, Disaster Relief, Village sanitations etc.).

E – Education & Empowerment [5] to spread education awareness, help students for their study and provide job oriented training (Projects are Computer literacy, Talented Students Sponsorship (TSS), MUKTI Support School (MSS), Book Bank etc.).

A – Agriculture Reforms to improve food security, climate change adaptation and to rural economic reforms (Projects are Organic farming through Sustainable Agriculture Movement (such as climate friendly agriculture, agro based SME development etc.), Value chain development for these products).

L – Livelihood & Economic Security to promote self-help income generation, skill development and employ-ability creation for village women and young generations (Projects are Mukti Community Development Fund (MCDF) based on micro-finance concept and self-help group women).

E – Environment Economy to protect our mother nature and promote go green through value & need driven plantation (Projects are NaRKEL ((Natural Revolution with Koconut (Coconut) for Ecology and Livelihood)), Save the Sunderban (Go Green), GrEEN (Solar lamp for villagers)) etc.

R – Rights & Governance to protect rights of common people, promote empowerment and democratic good governance (Projects are EmPOWER (RTI Act awareness), Legal Aids for poor etc.).

Major Projects[edit]

Focus Area: Health

Sanitation (Low Cost toilets) projects for villagers (Past): The main aim of the project is to create awareness among villagers on preventive health care and ensure every village home is having modern toilets to prevent spread of diseases. Under this project 20,000 low cost but yet modern toilets are built up for villagers.

Medical Camps: Based on need and appeal of villagers several free medical camps are being organized. Few examples of medical camps are blood donation camp, thalassemia check, general eye and cataract check, general physical health check etc. During Cyclone Aila in 2009 and Kerala flood in 2018, MUKTI helped thousands of flood victims with different medical aids.

Focus Area: Education [6]

Village Computer Literacy (Past): Students of village school does not get chance to modern education including use of computers. The project objective is to create computer labs at school and help students to acquire basic knowledge on computers. Old computers are donated by corporate for this project.

Talented Students Sponsorship (TSS):[7] Hundreds of talented but needy students of West Bengal get sponsorship from MUKTI for their higher study. Applications are called from students each year during starting January. The applications are reviewed, and interviews are conducted by an experienced panel of MUKTI in Kolkata. MUKTI seeks sponsorship for these selected candidates from various organisations and individuals. Once sponsorship is received those are passed on to students on quarterly basis. MUKTI also organizes periodic review and meeting with sponsors and students. MUKTI encourages all sponsors to meet their students regularly and motivate them to be successful in life. This project is in effect since 2007.

Book Bank:[8] Thousands of school children are receiving free text books since 2003 under this project. Government does not supply text book after fifth grade. For the students from poor family background, it is impossible to buy text books which are required for their school education. End of the year students return those books and they are reused. A public library has been also created for the village students in Purbo Sridharpur, Raidighi, South 24 Parganas, West Bengal.

Support School:[9] Due to very poor ratio between teachers and students, school education is not sufficient for the students of village schools. Hundreds of students of Sundarbans get quality after-school educational support from best-in-class teachers through this project. They also get special help for standard 10 (Madhyamik Pariksha) board examination. Teachers are selected from educated young of the same or near by localities. The teachers also gets special training from experienced teachers to enhance their skills. Local unemployed educated young joins here as teacher with proper training arranged by MUKTI.

Focus Area: Agriculture

RISTE (Addressing Barriers to Rice Seeds Trade between India and Bangladesh) (Past): The objective of this project is to find possibilities of bilateral trade of high quality rice seed between India and Bangladesh so that common people an framers get benefited. The project was executed in partnership with CUTS International and supported by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Sustainable Agriculture Movement (SAM): In post cyclone Aila situation MUKTI started the projects on removing salinity of soil and how quickly that can be given back to framers for cultivation. After that the organic vegetable movement started as next natural step for Sundarbans. MUKTI arranged adequate training for the framers of Sundarbans with the help of Association for India’s Development and Revathi from Chennai in TOT model. Today more than 5000 framers received organic framing training and 700 framers regularly practising organic farming. As of Jan 2019, 104 have received PGS (Participatory Guarantee Systems) – India National Standards for Organic Production certificate. Mukti has also established an organization Mukti Fresh to ensure the supply chain of the produced organic food in Sundarbans.

Focus Area: Livelihood

Community Development Fund and Self-Help Group: Objective of this project is to provide interest free loan to the women entrepreneurs of villages. The project also ensures 3 minimum three hands-on training to women. Project is based on core concept of microfinance. Social investor can invest interest-free capitals to this project with guaranteed return or reinvest option. As of today (Jan 2019) about 1400 women doing their own business successfully and more than 6500 women supported.

MUKTI Institute of Technology: There are many educated young bachelors in villages of Sundarbans who are not having any job. The project helps them to develop various job-oriented including vocational training so that they can secure either higher wage or be self-employed.

Focus Area: Environment

Solar Lamp Distribution (Past): Under this project self-contained solar lamps are being supplied to students who are from poor background and does have the electricity.

Cyclone Aila disaster recovery (Past): In 2009 Sundarbans were heavily impacted due to devastating cyclone Aila. Being a local NGO, MUKTI supported large relief work in this area for several months. And later also MUKTI worked closely on different issues popped up in post Cyclone Aila situation. Many of the projects actually designed to help inhabitants of Sundarbans against the issues arose due to this cyclone.

Save the Sundarbans (Go Green):[10][11] The project is designed to minimize the impact of Global warming on the inhabitants of this area. It encourages people of this area for plantation. Thousands of flower and fruits plants are distributed among the villagers and children. MUKTI Nursery helps to create these plants over the year and later they are distributed. The project also works to build environmental awareness and execute campaign for the same.

NaRKEL (Natural Revolution with Koconut for Ecology and Livelihood): Coconut trees are having multi fold benefits and are the natural plant in the climate of Sundarbans. While it helps to prevent the soil erosion, also helps to produce oxygen and coconut itself. Since 2011, several lakhs of coconut trees are planted across the road side and river bank.

Focus Area: Rights & Governance

RTI Project: Goal of this project is to provide all supports to engage poor villagers to the right to information. Hundreds of poor villagers have been directly benefited by this project. Projects are ensures proper awareness creation among villagers on this RTI Act., 2005.

Focus Area: Yaas cyclone disaster relief (current) In 2021 Sundarbans have been severely impacted due to devastating cyclone Yaas. Being a local NGO, MUKTI has been supporting large relief work in this area for several months now and still some more to go. Food(ration), medical support, clothes and tarpaulins were distributed to cater to the need https://muktiweb.org/?s=yaas. A lot of funds still required. To make contributions please visit MUKTI website https://muktiweb.org/donate/.


Focus Area: COVID-19 HELLO BETA ( current) Providing Oxygen support through concentrators, food (cloud kitchen concept), medicine and tele-medicine support in Kolkata [1] in the tough times of Covid 19 to help patients survive specially the old. This is undergoing with support from Srijan Realty, Bay Area Prabasi, Rural Health Care Foundation, Aid For Indian Music, Kolkata Foundation. Again to make contributions please visit https://muktiweb.org/product/donate-for-o2-concentrator.

Award and Recognition[edit]

Year Award Name Status Comments
2018 National Insurance True Legends Awards in Association with The Telegraph [12][13] Won Founder President of MUKTI Sankar Halder received this award for his outstanding contribution in social service
2016 Americares Spirit of Humanity Award Finalist MUKTI was selected for the final round of this prestigious award
2015 Star of Asia Award by International Business Council (IBC) Won Mukti's founder president Mr. Sankar Halder was honored in an event held in New Delhi, India on 18 December 2015.
2015 Vivek Sanman Award Won Mukti's founder President Sankar Halder received this award from “VIVEK PATHE” of Kolkata an organization inspired and motivated by the life and teaching of Swami Vivekananda.
2015 Krishi Ratna Award by Govt. of West Bengal Won Mukti's farmer Pintu Purkait of Mathurapur Block II in Raidighi, South 24 Parganas received this award

References[edit]

External links[edit]


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