Past Projects

The Northern Rebuilding Programme

Practical Action implemented the Northern Rebuilding Programme in Killinochchi and Mullaitivu districts with financial assistance from USAID/OFDA in 2011. Concluding in November 2013 the programme significantly impacted livelihoods by improving village level agricultural infrastructure enabling 14,780 returnee community members to resume agricultural and fisheries livelihoods. In total, 11 minor irrigation tanks, 5 km of irrigation channels, 6 km of salt water extrusion bunds, 200 acres of paddy lands, 6 km of agro roads and 7.5 km of fisheries access roads were rehabilitated. Additionally, 786 of the most vulnerable fisher families were provided with fishing crafts and gear to restart their livelihoods. The cash for work component of the programme assisted for more than 1,000 individuals through engagement in rehabilitation of the infrastructure. Employing a participatory approach, during planning, implementation and monitoring the programme promoted equal participation of women with a special focus on the most vulnerable in the community. Practical Action’s Participatory Market System Development (PMSD) interventions in Killinochchi and Mullaitivu saw an estimated 28,169 fisher and farmer families benefit from improved market systems and access to new markets and business services regionally and nationally.

The Socio-economic Empowerment of Tsunami Affected Communities (SET) Project

The Socio-economic Empowerment of Tsunami Affected Communities Project worked in 4 divisional secretariat divisions (DSD) severely affected by conflict and the tsunami in the Batticaloa district. 92 % funded by the Big Lottery Fund (BLF) on a total budget of £590,566 SET was implemented by Practical Action in 2009. Concluding in 2013, SET addressed the most pressing community needs such as stronger, supportive institutional structures and systems, sustainable livelihoods, and disaster-resistant infrastructure. SET also worked with Sri Lanka’s indigenous coastal Veddha community helping them to adjust to life out of the wild and break the shackles of poverty via sustainable livelihood promotion and empowerment of women through income generation. The different project components directly benefitted 10,214 tsunami affected villagers and communities at 23 neighbouring villages. Today, community institutions have the capacity to access funding from government and service organizations to plan and implement disaster resistant sustainable livelihood development. 71% of families (7,284 people) have experienced a 202% increase in income  through improved productivity and market access, infrastructure facilities and service linkages Additionally, 63% of the families (6,452 people) enjoy a significant increase in water availability enabling a 295% increase in paddy cultivation and year-round water for 3,000 cattle. Improved access to drinking water for 3,720 people has greatly enhanced their resilience to natural disasters such as droughts, floods and cyclones.

Community Governance in Infrastructure Services Project

The five year Community Governance in Infrastructure Services project co-funded by the European Union and implemented by Practical Action concluded in 2014. Operating in Sri Lanka, India and Pakistan the project centered on mainstreaming community voices in development planning and interventions. The project actively advocated development of institutional capacities of local governance systems in South Asia to mainstream participation of poor and vulnerable men and women in consultative and decision making processes via developing, practicing and disseminating innovative mechanisms on community governance in infrastructure and service delivery. The project also demonstrated how poor communities can access basic needs such as water, transport, transparency and accountability through appropriate technology based approaches practiced by Practical Action. Beneficiaries of the Community Governance Project include 175,000 men and women from marginalized tribes, urban slum dwellers, communities affected by natural disasters including floods, drought and tsunami, people with disabilities, marginalized women groups, elders, and those affected by conflict in Sri Lanka, India and Punjab in Pakistan. Compounding this number, by completion in 2013 the project had also reached a significant number of beneficiaries indirectly.

European Union funded Housing Project for Conflict Affected IDP's

The European Union launched the European Union funded housing project for conflict affected IDP's in Vavuniya, Sri Lanka in 2009. Practical Action served as training partner to implementer Arbeiter- Samariter-Bund (ASB) building the capacity of ASB staff in community mobilizing and technical skills and providing training in safe construction techniques to beneficiaries. Over the project duration, Practical Action’s Technical Officers conducted beneficiary training sessions for 1657 trainees (696 females, 961 males), inclusive of hundreds of masons who benefitted through learning new construction skills boosting their marketability in the future. The housing team’s expertise was recognized by UN Habitat; requesting Practical Action to conduct 3 training workshops for 80 participants in Vavuniya and Killinochchi in November, 2012. The collaboration between ASB and Practical Action saw the construction of 2794 houses over three years. The training component of the project provided by Practical Action yielded positive results injecting new life into the local economy and providing over 11,000 beneficiaries with a home to call their own.

Hydro Power Technology Initiatives

Practical Action has been actively developing Pico Hydro technology in Sri Lanka since 2007 as part of its Enhancing Renewable Energy Options (EREO) project. Pico hydro is potentially the lowest cost technology for off-grid electrification, producing energy from the smallest of water flows. The main environmental benefit of pico hydro is a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and local pollution from burning fuels such as kerosene for lighting, diesel for driving machinery and generating electricity. To date, Practical Action has successfully implemented 19 pico hydro units around the country serving rural communities with no access to the national grid. Since 2010 Practical Action has been providing technical assistance on Energy and Development initiatives to the Orissa Tribal Empowerment and Livelihoods Programme (OTELP) in the State of Orissa, India. Through this partnership Practical Action OTELP work to eradicate poverty by incorporating energy equity into existing and future development plans focused on marginalized tribal communities in Orissa. Approximately 19,000 men and women in selected tribal areas of Orissa benefitted from pico hydro installations carried out by OTLEP in 2012.

What we do

Livelihoods & Small
Enterprise Development

Janathakshan has vast experience developing domestic / large scale biogas...

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Capacity Building &
Knowledge Sharing

Janathakshan works with stakeholders in the government and local communities...

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Janathakshan uplifts the lives of rural communities through infrastructure and...

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