Providing safety nets for the most vulnerable.

The Indian government provides safety nets for the most vulnerable but many people find it hard to access them because of social and geographical barriers. We recognise that it will take time to make these provisions readily accessible for everyone and hope to assist in this process.

In the India Programme, we have five Oak Programmes that work together to address a combination of issues that affect populations with less access to resources in Jharkhand and West Bengal located in east India. Ultimately, we aim to: improve the lives of the most marginalised groups; institutionalise practices that address poverty and social injustice; and build strong organisations at the grassroots.

 

Our Strategy

We provide core support and project funding to organisations that work in our priority areas. The ultimate aim of our programme is to protect people from discrimination, and support the full implementation of social and economic schemes.

The 4 key areas

Our grant-making involves the following priority areas :

  1. Supporting safe migration and fair labour
    For example, we fund the Jharkhand Anti-trafficking Network, a cohort of 14 local organisations. It supports migrant communities to access information that helps them collaborate with the government to ensure the effective implementation of laws and policies. This helps protect them socially and economically, thus helping prevent their exploitation.
  2. Supporting sustainable urban development, responsive governance and safety in mobility
    For example, we fund Ekjut in Jharkhand, which helps build the capacity of the State Department of Urban Planning and Development, city corporations and civil society to understand the needs of the urban poor and homeless populations, and provide them with appropriate services.
  3. Supporting sustainable use and conservation of natural resources
    For example, we fund the Global Greengrants Fund to support small and marginal farmers to practice organic agriculture as a strategy to adapt to climate change.
  4. Supporting freedom from violence in public and private spaces
    For example, we fund SWAYAM in West Bengal to mobilise communities to stop tolerating violence. It also provides support to survivors of violence, including psychosocial counselling, legal and medical aid and shelter.

 

All of our grants work simultaneously on cross-cutting themes, such as:

empowerment, citizenship and leadership, by supporting communities (including women and other marginalised groups) to access information, participate fully in decision-making processes and realise their entitlements and full potential; and
capacity building, by strengthening organisational practices that represent diverse communities, and improve systems’ abilities to represent grassroots people in negotiation with the government and other key actors.