Development would always start from the bottom: Shoib Sultan Khan
SUKKUR: The rural development pioneer, Chairman of the Sindh Rural Support Orgnization (SRSO) Shoib Sultan Khan said that development would always start from the bottom, not the top adding that the poor have the potential to change their destiny and end poverty, if they are organised, save their resources and hone their skills.
Speaking in the LSO conference on Social Mobilization on Rural Communities, organized by IMSD at SRSO Complex here on Saturday, he said of community representatives, “Your achievements have given me and my colleagues the strength to go to the government or any other organisation and say that people have the ability to succeed, if you help them,” he said.
Welcoming the budget Speech of Sindh Chief Minister (CM) Syed Qaim Ali Shah who praised RSPs effort of Union Council Based Poverty Reduction Program (UCBPRP) in Sindh and thanked for extending the Sindh Union Council Based Poverty Reduction Programme from 12 to all Districts in the province.
He said that the major features of the program are income generating grants, vocational training, Health insurance, reactivation of abandoned primary schools and post flood village rehabilitation.
Director, SRSO fazalullah Qureshi said that the rural women have many challenges that they face adding that in most parts of the developing world women participate in crop production and livestock care, provide food, water and fuel for their families, and engage in off-farm activities to diversify their families’ livelihoods. In addition, they carry out vital functions in caring for children, older persons and the sick, he added.
Rural women play a critical role in the rural economies of both developed and developing countries, he said and added that their involvement in social mobilization efforts at the grassroots level has helped local rural women communities as well.
The renowned developer Mr Khan further said that in one of Pakistan’s poorest region, the SRSO is providing loans to poor women as well as rural male and female through Community Investment Fund (CIF) in which women collectively manages the fund, distributing loans for investment in income-generating activities only. This has built the confidence and capabilities of poor rural women, whose concerns are often brushed aside by male tribal elders.
Acting Chief Exicutive Officer (CEO) SRSO Ghulam Mustafa Abro said the UCBPRP was launched with the objective to reduce poverty, improve quality of life of marginalised communities, capacity development, asset creation and income generation. By grace of Almighty Allah, the programme has met immense success, he added.
Mr Abro further was of the view that Sindh government trying to empowerment of people, eradication of poverty, providing employment and development.
Director IMSD, Mukhtiar Talpur said SRSO also helping poor rural communities through CIF and capacity building of VOs. Community organizations under the banner of Local support Organization (LSO) at Union Council are also trained on CIF management, VO management and record keeping just to make these networks effective and productive, he added.
He said that the Chairman of his organization Khan’s work is based on the belief that the poor can bring themselves out of poverty if they are organised and their capacity developed addin that his life struggle suggested that the poor were the best judges of what was good for them.
Khan thanked the SRSO management and representatives of the LSOs, VOs. Khan’s Rural Support Programme taught the villagers a new way of doing things. Once they had formed village organisations, and started to cooperate instead of pursuing their separate interests, everything changed.
A hundreds of women community members, belonging to different districts of Sindh like Kashmore- Kandhkot, Shikarpur, Jaccababad, Sukkur, Khairpur and Ghotki attended the event.
During the conference, District Managers (DMs), representatives of the LSOs gave presentations.