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Housing with Land & Livelihood will help Irula Tribes out of Poverty

Posted on: 14/Dec/2017 6:48:42 PM
Habitat for Humanity India leads a State level forum of over 50 partners working with Government departments to advocate for land for tribal people across Tamil Nadu
Chennai. December 14, 2017. In a landmark development, over 50 organisations have partnered in a campaign and made a strong plea to provide access to land to evolve workable solutions for the upliftment of tribal communities and other economically weaker sections in Tamil Nadu. Led by the Indian arm of Habitat for Humanity International, a global NGO working on shelter and sanitation, the forum has first taken up the cause of Irula tribes residing in Cuddalore district of Tamil Nadu.

Land as the focus issue, Habitat for Humanity Indias Solid Ground Advocacy Campaign aims to mobilize allies and motivate policymakers to enact and implement policies and systems that advance access to land for shelter. Solid Ground Advocacy Campaign focuses on the four key areas: secure tenure, slum upgrading, disaster resilience and gender equality. In India, the campaign stems from Cuddalore and at the state level it aims to bring relevant stakeholders to dialogue on issues pertaining to rapid urbanization, displacement, disaster response, slum upgradation, land and housing etc. The first state-level forum meeting was held at the Loyola College, Chennai. The panel discussion was spearheaded by Mr. Joseph Scaria, Director, Resource Development Asia Pacific, Habitat for Humanity, International. Key dignitaries from the Government were present to discuss the action plan and leverage the Solid Ground Advocacy Campaign in Tamil Nadu.  

Speaking about the initiative, Rajan Samuel, Managing Director, Habitat for Humanity India, said The purpose of this forum is to bring organizations and communities together to spread awareness on the need for land rights for neglected tribal communities. The partnership will work with local and regional governments to identify land for the Irula tribes to begin with. Along with it, the partners will also influence authorities to amend land policies to address housing needs of disaster-affected people and together we can work out way to implement together. Through the Solid Ground Advocacy Campaign we want to ensure that we address issues that affect access of even the weakest section of the society to a decent place to live. 

Joseph Scaria, Director, Resource Development Asia Pacific, Habitat for Humanity International, stated, We are working closely with the Tamil Nadu Government to implement a range of actions and influence from relevant stakeholders. We are keen to ensure these actions trickle down to district, local and community levels. We are also collaborating with local NGOs so that the Irula tribes residing in Cuddalore have a solid ground to make their homes. Habitat for Humanity India would facilitate and execute the campaign. 

Supporting the campaign and forum, Mr. Shambu Kallolikar, IAS, Principal Secretary, Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board said, We are happy that civil society organizations are coming forward to work with the government. We are committed to our vision of housing for all and making Chennai a slum free city and also looking at the social inclusion of all people. 
About Habitat for Humanity India
Habitat for Humanity Indias vision is a world where everyone has a decent place to live. Anchored by the conviction that safe and affordable housing provides a critical foundation for breaking the cycle of poverty, Habitat works with low-income, marginalized families to build homes, provides housing-related services and raises awareness for adequate housing and sanitation. Since its inception in 1983, Habitat for Humanity India has touched the lives of over 14,29,645 individuals across 20 states of our country. Habitat for Humanity India is part of Habitat for Humanity International - a global non-governmental organization that seeks to eliminate poverty housing and to make adequate shelter a matter of conscience and action. The core area of Habitats work in India is: Decent Shelter, WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene), Disaster Risk Reduction and Response.

Habitat for Humanity works with people of all backgrounds, races and religions to build houses together in partnership with families in need. Habitat for Humanity Indias long term strategic goal for 2015-20 is to impact the lives of 25,00,000 individuals in their dream of living in a safe and a decent home. To learn more, donate or volunteer, visit www.habitatindia.in

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