The Cartier Women’s Initiative Awards are an international business plan competition created in 2006 to identify, support and encourage projects by women entrepreneurs.Since their inception in 2006, they have accompanied 162 promising female business-owners and recognized 58 Laureates.

Provides water management solutions for farmers affected by drought and flash floods.

In India, more than 6.72 million hectares of land is a ected by salinity and seasonal water logging and nearly 5 million small and marginal farmers, especially women farmers, have to bear the consequences of extreme weather patterns.

An innovative water management system is freeing smallholders in India from the challenges of seasonal water logging and water scarcity, transforming uncultivable land and ensuring food security for ultra-poor farmers.

Naireeta Services, a social enterprise co-founded by 46-year-old Trupti Jain, is providing a sustainable solution for these drought and flood-affected farmers using an ingenious handmade pipe which lasts for up to 30 years. Bhungroo – which means straw or hollow pipe in Hindi – enables rainwater to be ltered, injected and stored underground for use during lean periods.

In India, very few women own land in their own name. So we are giving these rights back to these women, increasing their economic independence and empowering them socially


As well as boosting agri-income by an average of 300% and helping impoverished farmers become self-su cient, Bhungroo is having a far reaching social impact on women in these communities. Women play an important role in the agricultural sector in India, in terms of both labour and indigenous knowledge about cropping patterns.

“But somehow it’s not recognised by our community, our society and organisations. They are working as labourers on their own farm land, although they own their land. They don’t have their own stake or recognition.”

“We just want to formalise their services so that they will get recognition and economic empowerment”

It’s my dream that each and every woman who is contributing in the agricultural sector should be recognised

Following the Gandhian principle of Antyodaya – welfare of all through serving the weakest of the society – these “Women Climate Leaders” as Trupti likes to call them, have also been trained to spread the message about Bhungroo in villages in disaster-a ected areas.


Emancipating women farmers from abject poverty and giving them con dence and dignity is the mission of Naireeta Services and with Bhungroo, this vision is becoming a reality. “We have engaged with nearly 3,000 smallholders and agricultural women labourers. Bhungroo has the potential to reach all the women smallholders across
the globe.”

Seventeen technical designs of Bhungroo are now available for diverse communities within various agro-climatic zones, and there are plans in place to train more rural women to become World Climate Leaders to deliver Bhungroo to ultra-poor women smallholders.

Over the next ve years, the model developed by Naireeta Services is expected to

transform the lives of hundreds and thousands of rural poor, helping them access life-long food security and signi cantly boosting their income. Trupti also hopes to enter into partnerships with like-minded agencies from across the globe.

This feature was originally published on Cartie

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