Towards realizing its core objective to mobilize communities, women in particular, facilitate the development and empowerment of rural communities, Vidyanikethan is implementing the PEARL project (People's Empowerment to Access Right To Livelihood) in 8 villages at SaundattiTaluk, Belgaum District, Karnataka. Special focus is on Scheduled Castes/Scheduled tribes and Devadasis (temple courtesans) .

The project is being supported by IGSSS - Regional Office, Bangalore The primary objective of the project is to reduce poverty in the area by providing opportunities for sustainable livelihoods to 1000 socially and economically marginalized families through the following rights based approach:

  • Right to food
  • Right to work
  • Right to credit
  • Right to natural resources

Right to food

Awareness was created through workshops on different government schemes such as the Integrated Child Development Programme, the Public Distribution Service, and the Mid-day meal etc.The nature of interventions include distributing of major food articles, and nutritious food to the Anganwadicentres (village level pre-primary and primary informal learning centres for the children. Information was provided about the various schemes under the Government of India's Public Distribution Systems. The mid-day meals system, whereby Government Schools provide mid-day meals to children from low income groups, were also regularized.

Right to work

The awareness generation on different Government Employment Schemes (NREGA and SJSRY), with the objective to generate work opportunities beyond agriculture led to families getting employment, and apply for job applications. Many of the families also recieved payment for the work done, thus bringing great relief at a time where jobs were not available.

Right to credit

The concept of self help was explained to the people subsequen to which they were mobilized and formed into self-help groups. In the process, many existing self-help groups were re-formed. The Self-Help groups also opened bank accounts, and were trained on book-keeping.

Right to natural resources

As against the planned Vanamahotsava, which includes purchase of forestry and horticulture plants, events related to plantations of 450 trees were organized successfully.