Raju Agarwal has a vivid memory of visiting India as a child and seeing families lying on the railway platform, emaciated from lack of food. Many years later, he visited India again and was approached by a young woman holding a baby, begging for money. When asked why she didn’t attend school, she answered that she would love to but couldn’t because her mother worked as a servant and she had to look after her baby brother. He wanted to make a difference but it wasn’t until 2010, after reading “Leaving Microsoft to Change the World” by John Wood was he inspired to take action and founded OneProsper.
The focus of Raju’s non-profit was the Thar Desert of Rajasthan, India which faces water scarcity due to climate change. Groundwater is declining which results in lower crop yields and less access to nutritious food. Women and girls walk 5-7 hours per day to collect water and malnutrition and vitamin deficiency are common
Drip irrigation is an innovative farming method that enables women to grow more vegetables while conserving water. As a result, families can grow crops, feed their children more nutritious food and earn sustainable livelihoods from selling their surplus.
OneProsper raises money to provide female farmers in the Thar Desert with innovative drip irrigation kits, rainwater harvesting tanks, vegetable seeds, organic fertilizer and pesticide and training. In addition, OneProsper is training themto open their bank accounts so they can repay the cost of the drip irrigation kits over three years.
“The cost of providing one small farmer with drip irrigation kit, rainwater harvesting tank, agri-inputs and training is $1,900. Our goal is to raise funds to provide 100 small farmers with everything they need to irrigate and harvest rainwater.” – Raju Agarwal, Founder of OneProsper.
Why Bhakti Chai loves this project
Bhakti is devoted to empowering women and when families can grow their own crops, their hunger plight is dramatically improved. Not only does OneProsper’s program increase the economic security of women in India, it also makes them more independent and civically minded. You can learn more about OneProsper at oneprosper.org.