By IPS Correspondent
PATNA, India, Apr 10 2023 (IPS)
Under the Bihar Rural Livelihoods Promotion Society, Bihar’s government announced the development of a new Program for Immersion and Learning Exchange (ILE) to be headquartered in Patna.
The Bihar Rural Livelihoods Promotion Society, locally known as JEEVIKA, is the implementing agency of Satat Jeevikoparjan Yojana (SJY), a government-led poverty alleviation program in Bihar that has reached over 150,000 households as of early 2023 and is still expanding.
SJY aims to boost the human capital of people living in extreme poverty and the most excluded households through the Graduation approach, an evidence-based, multifaceted, sequenced set of interventions that includes support of consumption, livelihoods, savings, and training. A rigorous study of Graduation in West Bengal by Nobel Laureates Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo demonstrates that Graduation provides people with the resources and skills needed to break the poverty trap.
“This a new beginning,” said Rahul Kumar, CEO of JEEVIKA. “JEEVIKA will function as an Immersion and Learning Centre for delegates outside state and country to understand our Graduation Program.”
Drawing on vast experience in supporting the design, delivery, and evaluation of Graduation programs worldwide for more than 20 years, BRAC International will serve as a technical partner for the ILE.
“BRAC International is honored to partner with the Bihar state government to launch an Immersion and Learning Exchange program at JEEVIKA so many more can learn from the Government of Bihar’s experience building inclusive livelihoods for marginalized women,” said Gregory Chen, Managing Director of BRAC Ultra-Poor Graduation Initiative (UPGI), a flagship program of BRAC International.
Since 2002, BRAC’s Graduation program in Bangladesh has reached more than 2.1 million households (approximately 9 million people) and supported the expansion of Graduation in 16 additional countries through direct implementation, technical assistance, and advisory services for implementing partners and governments. BRAC is committed to further advancing the expansion of Graduation by scaling it through governments across Africa and Asia to achieve maximum impact.
Learning and knowledge exchange has played a critical role in supporting adaptation and expansion efforts of the Graduation approach for various poverty contexts since it was pioneered in 2002. To date, more than 100 organizations in nearly 50 countries have adopted Graduation, according to the World Bank’s Partnership for Economic Inclusion.
Through immersion visits and learning exchange facilitated by JEEVIKA’s ILE, insights around the design, implementation, and evaluation of Graduation will be more accessible to other state governments in India and national governments throughout the Global South looking to enhance existing poverty alleviation efforts and enable millions more people around the world to escape the poverty trap.
IPS UN Bureau Report