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Discovering Peace Through Livelihood
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Recovery from conflict is essential to sustain peace in a country like Nepal that is passing through a historical transition. Experiences from around the world have shown that relapsing into conflict is more likely when peace dividends do not reach the people, especially those who are at the receiving end.
This publication is a collection of human stories prepared as part of the experiences gained under the Livelihood Recovery for Peace (LRP) Project of UNDP in Nepal. This five-year project was launched in late 2009 and implementation started in early 2010. The stories presented here are, therefore, achievements of the past two years collected
through individual interviews and focus group discussions with target beneficiaries, representatives from local civil society, and community leaders.The project is implemented in Mahottari, Sarlahi and Rautahat, the three Central Tarai (southern plains) districts of Nepal, where poverty, conflict and natural disasters have hindered development. These districts have the lowest Human Development Index among the Tarai districts. The 2.1 million people who live in these districts have a mixed ethnic make up. The project is designed to be implemented in all 271 village development committees (VDCs) of the three districts through a cluster approach. To date, LRP has implemented its programmes in 176 VDCs covering all 76 VDCs in Mahottari, 67 VDCs in Sarlahi, and 33 VDCs in Rautahat.
About one third of the households (i.e. 34%) had experienced flood in 3 or more years and 66% of the households had thatched roofs that pose high risk for fire. The average family size was 5.88 members as opposed to the national average of 4.9. It was also found that 97% of the households defecated in open spaces and 52% did not have private drinking water source and used public sources that are vulnerable to contamination. In addition, 60% of 15-29 year olds worked as agriculture wage labourers and the average per capita income was NRs. 4795 when the national poverty line was NRs. 19,261 for 2010/2011 according to the National Living Standard Survey. The baseline survey has also revealed that nearly 70% of households reported some level of discrimination while only 4.4% had some representation in various decision-making committees (e.g. User committees, school management committees, ward and VDC committees, etc.), and no more than 2% of VEEDs had been represented in VDC planning process. Overall, these data illustrate the status of
vulnerability, exclusion and economic deprivation of the communities LRP is working with in the Central Tarai.
It prioritises promoting gender equality and social inclusion and also ensures that social harmony and community cohesion is promoted through LRP’s interventions. The project’s poverty pocket approach targets vulnerable, excluded and economically deprived (VEED) households within the programme VDCs. This approach takes into account locational factors (e.g. communities living in flood-prone areas), economic deprivation of the households, as well as social exclusion and historical marginalisation of the community groups. Coupled with this approach of focusing on the VEED households, LRP gives priority to empowering women, members of the excluded communities, and youth.
The case stories documented here illustrate various activities LRP is doing with its different stakeholders as part of its integrated approach. While most stories are short, a couple of stories have been developed to exemplify the impact on VEED beneficiaries of LRP’s integrated and multiple inputs. This collection is an effort to illustrate how LRP’s stakeholders have “discovered peace through livelihood” in a relatively short period. It is hoped that development stakeholders at all levels will find this collection to be a useful illustration of ways in which peace can be brought to communities in tangible forms that are meaningful to Nepalese in their everyday lives in post-conflict Nepal.
UNDP ,   (2011 )
Type / Script:
Progress Report in English
Thematic Group:
 UNDP : Social and Institutional Developoment
01.03.00  -  Maintenance Of Peace And Security
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