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General > Events

Successful Role of Nadar Civil Soceity Groups

Seminar on Civil Society Initiatives of Native Origin

Held on 7 March 2003 Venue: Tamukkam Grounds, Madurai

Interrelatedness of Microfinance and Development Themes

Building Stronger Community Organisations

In the past years, the few upwardly mobile community organizations promoted for specific purposes are diversifying and growing into civil society groups and institutionalized organizations. The successes in Microfinance Federations are worth mentioning and provide a model for many such sectors. Such proliferation of community organizations and their networks shall have a positive effect in bringing changes in the lives of the poor.

This seminar discussed the issues related to grass root democracy, which results in the betterment of the serving communities. In this context this seminar is likely to focus upon many such ideas and their successful grounding. The discussions would include the following:

• Promotion of community Federations serving the poor & the underprivileged

• Transforming the Federations into civic societies performing various services

• Integration of such civic society organizations into mainstream institutions

The focus of simultaneous seminars in Madurai was on connecting microfinance and development themes. Microfinance has emerged as a pivotal instrument in addressing various causes of poverty, however, it is important to understand the interrelatedness of the microfinance intervention with other developmental issues like education, health, women empowerment and development infrastructure etc. to impact the poverty. Hence these simultaneous seminars was aimed to facilitate deliberations on various aspects of interrelatedness between microfinance programme and other development themes.

The participants includeed practitioner NGOs, Academicians, Research Institutions, Banks, Government and Donor community representatives and Agencies.

Case studies of Civil Society Initiatives of Native Origin

There are local communities in the villages and towns, reative enough to run huge network of schools, business enterprises, and developmental programmes, which are conventionally felt, as the domains of the state or private individual philanthropy. These initiatives are highly successful and follow many management systems, which are non-conventional by any stretch of imagination. Their services are efficient and are built around local communities. These cases demonstrate that organized development work in the country need not necessarily be driven by state interventions or private interventions alone.

In the seminar the following case studies was presented for the discussions

• Kshatriya Vidyasala Schools & Educational enterprises in Virudunagar

• Palamedu Pathrakaliamman Milk Society

• V.Pudhur Village Association

• Authoor Betel leaf Farmers Association

• Traditional irrigation societies in Tamiraparani system

These above said initiatives are large in size worth of several crores serving a large population and economy without any external interventions including the government for decades. Some of them are around 100 years old. They question the conventional wisdom of instituting and handholding organizations to serve the communities.


The other community federation that serve as civil societies worthy of large services to poor and underpreviledged with huge successful management in Tamilnadu are

• Sivakasi Hindu Nadar Victoria Schools and related institutes, Sivakasi, • Sattur Hindu Nadar. Edward Higher Secondary School, Sattur,

• PKN (Pandiyakula Kshatriya Nadar) Schoools and other educational institutions under its management, Thirumangalam• N.S.V.V.Higher Secondary Schools, Pattiveeranpatti Thiru Sundara Nadar and his Wife vishalakshi ammal donated all their assets

• Nadar Parasakthi Milk Society, Bodianyakanur, Tamil Nadu,

• Pathrakaliamman Milk Society, Bodianyakanur, Tamil Nadu and othe Cooperative Milk Societies operating at Surandai, Iluppaiyur etc.

Bsram B


I am a writer.

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