Read daily updates during the competition period at Find below the weekly newsletter that we put together in the run-up to the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2017.

Our Weekly Newsletter – Edition 6 (April 8, 2017)

Paani Foundation


Here’s a compilation of some of what was shared with the villagers during the special Caravan Gram Sabha that we held for 12 days recently.

Dr. Avinash Pol, an integral part of Paani Foundation, shared: “Only when the ego drops away can a huge task be accomplished. Only when people come together does it become possible. All the divisions in the village along the lines of religion, gender, caste or economic status will then drop away. Water scarcity is a major problem, and we must solve it. If you take an interest in it, watershed development is an easy-to-understand science. It is not difficult to make Maharashtra drought-free. All you have to do is resolve not to let the rain that falls on your field flow out of it, but to make it seep into the ground.”

Dr. Pol also emphasised the importance of offering shramdaan. He said, “Shramdaan takes us closer to nature, and creates a deep bond between us and the environment. Shramdaan also fosters a deep-seated change in people. It is a necessary bond to unite people with.”

Renowned actor Jitendra Joshi said, “(Bhakti saint-poet) Dnyaneshwar says that ‘The world entire is my abode!’ The viewers of my films are spread out all across the state. Thus, I feel personally responsible to support this movement for water conservation. Everyone, in fact, bears a similar responsibility, and must carry it out to the best of his or her ability.”

Joshi also said, “I took four days of training at the centre set up by Paani Foundation at Jakhangaon village. I dug a contour trench as part of the training – it was so easy to learn! When I got back home, I resolved to plant 500 trees in the coming monsoon season. That is because I believe that the path to a green and prosperous Maharashtra begins with my personal first step.”

He also gave the villagers a beautiful analogy. He said, “A pregnant woman is pampered to no end by her kin and even by strangers; does the ever-fecund black earth not require similar care from us? This mother of ours has borne us in her belly, has raised and fed us. Shouldn’t we be responsible for her well-being? We must respect the earth mother and the rain that nourishes her.
So, this year, let us welcome the rain differently. Let us help it seep into the ground and thus give it the respect that it deserves. And then see what happens!”

Joshi then recited a quatrain from a Marathi poem by Namdeo Dhondo Mahanor, the famous Marathi poet. It is poetic material like this that has provided inspiration to countless people, and we are sure it will do so for our Water Cup participants as well!

Many heroes are unknown, and live in obscurity. For many of the non-Maharashtrian folk on our timeline, Popatrao Pawar is one such hero. Pawar is Sarpanch of the Hiware Bazar village. His claim to greatness lies in the fact that he took his village from being a drought-prone dustbowl to a green oasis. To achieve this, of course, he used water management and conservation techniques. Considering his admirable expertise, we roped him in to address our ninth day Gram Sabha.

Addressing his audience of fellow village residents from Vidarbha, Marathwada and Western Maharashtra, Pawar said, “Every region of this state has its own distinct geographical characteristics. You can’t adopt the same (watershed development) measures everywhere. If there’s a mountain nearby, a deep contour trench is the best structure to construct to yield water. But if there’s no mountain nearby, build structures like compartment bunds, earthen dams, etc. What we need is sustainable development so even if you do less work in terms of quantity, make sure that it is technically sound.”

Pawar also spoke of the need for offering voluntary labour to build the structures. “Shramdaan can make the impossible possible. It also brings the village together. This unity, once created, can overcome any obstacle that the village may face.”

He concluded with the words: “Shivaji Maharaj, Gadge Baba, Tukaram, Dnyaneshwar and Tukdoji Maharaj are men worthy of emulation. For they taught us so much to cherish. Let us bring their rural ethos into direct action, and conserve and manage water well, protect trees, and make our village an oasis. You have my best wishes.”

Dr Pol and acclaimed actor Atul Kulkarni fielded many questions; one of them was: How to get more women to take part in the upcoming competition?

Kulkarni replied, “If one woman steps out to take part in the competition, her family will follow in her wake, and then the whole village will follow suit. So, the menfolk have to encourage the women to take part in the Water Cup. And each woman must exhort her female relatives to join this effort.”

He also shared a few insights from last year’s Water Cup. He said that the villages that succeeded in becoming water-abundant shared these characteristics:

1) They set aside their differences, conflicts and quarrels to take part in the Water Cup.
2) The village Sarpanch and Deputy Sarpanch and other village leaders played their leadership roles well.
3) The villages doing good work received support from the government and various other organisations.

Sai Tamhankar also gave them a pep talk thus:

“Treat the period from 8th April onwards (the start of the Water Cup 2017) as a crucial test. This competition has the potential to change your lives forever! I exhort you to leave no stone unturned in your efforts to succeed in this competition. We artistes are with you all the way to encourage you.”

Sayaji Shinde said, “Making a village drought-free involves eradicating petty politics from the village as well. Many villages suffer from a lack of unity. This gives rise to political conflict, which hobbles the development of the village. Therefore, I call upon everyone to come together and get to work without waiting for government help. Come together, and nothing is impossible for you!”

Bharat Ganeshpure is a household name in Maharashtra. His roles as a comedian on Marathi television have been well appreciated. But Ganeshpure gave a very serious, heartfelt message to the participants in the Gram Sabha organised by us. He said, “Working together for the common good requires you to have strong channels of communication among yourselves. And this communication needs to take place at the household level too. I think one of the causes of farmer suicides in Vidarbha is the lack of communication between husband and wife.”

Ganeshpure also said, “Instead of wasting breath on idle gossip, communicate with each other about the Water Cup competition, about the need for contributing manual labour, and bringing the village together for this cause. Let us come together as a village and perform tasks which will benefit our future generations.”

Accomplished actor Sunil Barve shared, “I’ve had many different kinds of experiences in life, but doing shramdaan (manual labour) was altogether a unique experience! I’ve got deep satisfaction and pure joy of knowing that I have joined a virtuous initiative.”

He was speaking of his experiences on the field during the Water Cup 2016 competition that was held last year. He concluded by saying, “We use water but do not know how to use it wisely, how to conserve it. This year, thanks to Water Cup 2017, we again have the chance to save and store water. Let us grab that opportunity and bring prosperity to our village!”

Kiran Rao, Paani Foundation’s co-founder, also interacted with thousands of villagers. Her message to the villagers:

“When you see the watershed development work done by villages like Velu, which won the Water Cup last year, you get the feeling that anything is possible! One couple from Velu even decided to postpone their wedding so that they could focus on doing water conservation work during the competition, such was the passion and commitment.

I call upon everyone to join this movement to make Maharashtra drought-free. To all the villages that will take part in Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2017, I’d like to say – join hands and work hard. All your efforts will bear fruit. And the joy you will get when you work together as a team, will be as invaluable as the water that will get saved due to your efforts. I wish all the villages the best of luck!”

In simple yet heartfelt words, Aamir Khan, Paani Foundation’s co-founder, inspired the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup participants and boosted their morale for the tough task that lies ahead. He said, “A major problem plagues Maharashtra: water scarcity. Here at Paani Foundation, we are of the firm belief that if everyone joins this movement for water conservation, we can make our villages drought-free. Watershed management, if implemented well in each village, will change the lives of the villagers.”

Aamir added, “Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2017 is a competition in which every village stands to win! Ek baat hamesha yaad rakhiye: agar hum paani ki izzat karenge to paani hamari izzat karega.

Our Weekly Newsletter – Edition 5 (March 30, 2017)

Paani Foundation’s co-founders Aamir Khan and Kiran Rao talked about our work on water conservation and the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup on Zee Marathi’s popular TV show ‘Chala Hawa Yeu Dya’ last week. To watch the full episode, please visit and

We were recently contacted by government officials from various talukas in Marathwada region who told us they were keen on receiving the training that we had provided to villagers from 30 talukas of the state. We were only too glad to organise a special training programme for them on 24th March at our training centre in Ambajogai taluka.
It was heartening to see 85 government officials pledging to make their region water-sufficient! They comprised the Deputy Collectors, Tehsildars, Sub-Divisional Agricultural Officers and other cadres.
After the training, our zonal co-ordinator Irfan Sheikh messaged us, saying, “It boosted our morale to see government employees joining our training sessions with so much enthusiasm. If such important people support our movement, we can easily make Marathwada drought-free!”


‘Go onward, heft your tools… free the streams from the ground beneath your feet…’ This song addresses the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2017 participants directly, spurring them on to greater efforts.
As the date for the competition draws near, this Marathi song comes to us from Lochana Devkatte. This resident of Asardoh village in Dharur taluka in Beed district has poured into the song her experience of training for the Water Cup last week. We found the song to be extremely inspirational, and are sure you will find it too.
On a side note, we are happy to witness that the tradition of women composing work songs seems to be alive in Maharashtra’s villages, judging from the song that Devkatte kindly shared with us. For those who don’t know, Maharashtra has a rich past of women poets composing songs meant to be sung as one worked.

“अन्न गुडगुडे, नाल गुडगुडे, ढिशक्यांव ढिशक्यांव ढिशक्यांव!”

Transcribed into English, this reads: “Anna gudguge, naala gudgude, dhishkiaow dhishkiaow dhishkiaow!” These words hold special meaning for the enthusiastic participants of our training programmes on watershed development.
When shouted out in unison, this sequence of sounds, intriguing as it is, not only puts a smile on the participants’ faces, it also puts them in mind of the mission at hand: eventual eradication of drought in the state of Maharashtra. The slogan’s meaning is, “We are committed to obliterate the scarcity of food and water in our area!”
Watch a video clip of the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup participants shouting out this slogan here.

As we go about pumping people up for the Water Cup 2017 competition, we are learning that several organisations are coming forward to do their bit. A few days ago, the Gurudev Seva Mandal organised a procession through the Maharashtrian village of Vedshi in Ralegaon taluka and chanted slogans on water conservation, while singing hymns. Watch a short video here.

In a similar way, the Art of Living, through yoga and meditation camps in Man taluka, strove to get people to contribute their labour towards the building of watershed structures.
School students from Belura Khurd village in Patur taluka also held an awareness rally and requested people in their village to offer shramdan in large numbers during the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup competition period!

shalechi mule

Nine villages in Patur taluka in Akola district came together on Gudi Padwa and resolved to offer shramdan towards building watershed structures every single day of the 45-day long competition that will begin on 8th April!

In a ceremony officiated upon by Shirla village Sarpanch Rina Sanjay Shirsat, the villagers resolved to conquer drought once and for all. We wish them and all the 1300+ villages that attended the training programme for Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2017 all the best in their efforts!

Thank you for reading.

Warm regards,

Team Paani Foundation

Our Weekly Newsletter – Edition 5 (March 24, 2017)

The philosopher Lao Tzu is supposed to have said, “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”

Here at Paani Foundation, yesterday marked a significant first step on the road to the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2017. We are happy to inform you that we concluded our training sessions yesterday. The four-day residential training programmes on watershed development began on 4th February and were conducted across 22 training centres.

Men and women from 1,300 villages across Marathwada, Vidarbha and Western Maharashtra came forward for the training and will now work together with others in their village (and possibly, volunteers and donors from elsewhere) to make their village water-sufficient and win the Water Cup! This, of course, augurs well for water security in Maharashtra.

We wish our eager ‘water warriors’ all the very best for the tough but important journey ahead, and we are confident they will come through well.

After giving an overview to the participants on various technical and social aspects of watershed development, we are now conducting a special one-day workshop to focus on how villages can plan the watershed works for the upcoming competition.

The participants are also learning how to use a mobile app recently created by us as well as maps of the village that help determine appropriate treatments for different parts of the watershed.

Several government officials are also attending these workshops. We hope that these workshops help the villagers in effectively planning the work that they are likely to be doing during the period of the competition and later as well.

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On 22nd March, World Water Day, we shared a heartening success story from Velu village in Satara, sent to us by Mr Sharad Bhosale. He writes, “Last year was our third consecutive year of drought. The village was dependent on water tankers. This, obviously, wasn’t enough to keep our crops alive. The crops withered away for lack of water. It was a particularly low point for us.

That was when things began to turn around. The state government’s Jalyukt Shivar Abhiyan (a watershed management programme) began its work in our area. The village realised the importance of contributing labour to the cause, thanks to the guidance of Dr Avinash Pol.

Then, Paani Foundation’s Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2016 competition presented us with another opportunity. We took it, and did enormous amounts of watershed works in the village (and won the Water Cup). Under the leadership of the Collector Mr Ashwin Mudgal, various government departments also piled up mountains of work. Private donors stepped forward with important contributions.

As of March this year, the situation has improved, and how. It has taken a lot of people, a lot of co-ordinated effort, as I said before, but the field is green. It has yielded an excellent crop of jowar. The lemon tree that had withered away last year has burst into fruit. This despite the fact that last year’s rainfall was average. Yet, today there is enough drinking water in the village. My heartfelt pranaams to everyone who helped bring about this water revolution.”

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Our colleague Praful Kolhe, the taluka co-ordinator from Patur in Akola district sends in this short message of hope and community. He writes, “Charmoli is a mostly tribal village in Patur taluka. This village of 625 residents is perched on hilly terrain. No road or means of transport connect it to other villages. The village enrolled itself for the Water Cup and sent three villagers for the training.

These three villagers have unified the village as never before, which is evident in the fact that over 400 village residents took part in the Shivar Pheri (walk around the watershed area) recently. They comprised young and old, men and women, who walked around from morning to mid-afternoon. On the occasion, a bhajan group from the village sang hymns to the cause of water conservation as well. It was good to watch the village come together for a cause.”









That’s what a cause does, really, it forges a community together.

We will end this newsletter with one of the many moving comments that we have received on our website about the documentary film about our work…

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To watch the film (‘The Battle Against Drought’), please visit the below links. (Hindi version) (Marathi version)

That’s it for now.

Warm regards,

Team Paani Foundation

Our Weekly Newsletter – Edition 4 (March 17, 2017)

We are back with our weekly newsletter with stories from the field that have one key thing in common – people who are pushing boundaries to engage in community work, to help make Maharashtra drought-free!

Our colleague Ravi, the manager of the training centre that we have set up at Porghavan village, sent this heartwarming account of total commitment to the cause of water conservation and drought eradication three days ago.

Ravi writes (We’ve translated his words into English), “What happened today all but moved me to tears. I saw that the cook at our centre, Aniket Savarkar, who is generally cheerful, was unusually quiet as he served food to us. I could not contain my curiosity. After lunch I made enquiries with him. He divulged nothing, and I had to ask him twice or thrice to elicit any reply. He finally told me that his wife had delivered a stillborn son today. So saying, he shed his tears.

I said to him that he could have taken the day off. He replied that he was mindful of the fact that he was working for Paani Foundation, whose aim was to help eradicate drought in Maharashtra. He wanted to help it achieve its aim. That would be the true homage to his dead son. As I heard these words, I was at the verge of crying myself.”

We are extremely moved by Savarkarji’s sentiment, and vow to work diligently towards the cause that he holds so dear.

The date for Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2017 is near! Training sessions are coming to a close, and many villagers have begun canvassing their communities to ensure maximum participation in the competition.

The following note posted on a Facebook Page offers a peek into the intense emotion that the competition has inspired. Rajeev Madarse from Halgara village in Latur district writes, “My village is fired up to fight the drought and it is a fire no one can put out. We will not rest until we make our village water-abundant. We request you to join the effort; take up any task that needs doing and get it done.”

This is how a people’s movement is built, one village at a time…

To read the original post, visit

Image One

Meet Datta Patil, an engineer with Yahoo Inc in the United States. Patil encouraged his mother Mangaltai who also lives in Halgara village to attend our training programme. Here’s the note that he sent us recently:

“My mother has not had much education, having studied until Class Four, but life has taught her much. She has overcome many an adversity and even sold off her land to ensure that her son became an engineer. The four-day training that she attended paid off, and how! Upon her return to the village, she and the others from Halgara who attended the training managed to get 400 soak pits built in just 20 days to make the village mosquito-free, and also organise a clean-up of the village on each Sunday.

I offer my thanks to Paani Foundation for its efforts in making my village self-reliant. You have inspired many, many people. This is the biggest people’s movement I have witnessed in my life. Thank you!”

Image Two

Total commitment. This phrase applies well to the people of Khairkhed village in Vidarbha as well. After completing our training programme, the five participants from the village set about unifying the village residents and getting their support for water conservation. This they succeeded in doing spectacularly.

So spectacularly, in fact, that the village got together and decided that no weddings would take place during the period of the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup competition, that is, April 8 to May 22!

Image Three

Now that’s some great determination to maximise the opportunities and resources that will be available to the participating villages during the competition period!

‘Women’s Day’ on 8th March saw a flurry of online memes and offline events to celebrate their contribution to humankind. But women’s strong and patient hands keep the world turning every day, without any fanfare and without any publicity or any expectation of it. We are pleased to report that women are playing a major part in making Satyamev Jayate Water Cup a huge success as well. Take, for example, Surekha Phalke of Satara Road (Padali) village.

Phalke is a technical trainer for Water Cup 2017. This BSc graduate worked as a homemaker for 15 years. She got a taste of public service while working with the local primary school, and was also elected to the post of Sarpanch. Last year, she was chosen as one of the five participants from her village for the training on watershed development that we conducted. The experience rejuvenated her drive for public service, and she joined our team of technical and social trainers.

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We salute her and all our other trainers, including Seema Taksande, Puja Shelar, Chaitrali Shelar, Jyoti Surve, Ujjwala Brahmane, Tapasvi Khelulkar, Sunita Bhagat, Rajashri Pandit, Satyasheela Sukhdev, Pranita Khuje, Varsha Ramteke, Shubhangi Belvalkar, Surekha Joshi, Reena Pawar, Jagdevi Sugave, Trupti Shinde, Bharti Phalke, Iravati Darunde, Madhuri Ganeshe, Shubhangi Devle, Vidya Khade, Savita Petkar, Rita Thawkar, Chhabu Jivtode, Babita Gadling, Seema Padvi, Zia, Shrikanya Jadhav, Archana Waydande, Shraddha, Nagin Sarsekar, Shahnawaz Shaikh and Lata Bansode for their hard work.

On the occasion of Women’s Day, the Marathi news channel ABP Majha sent the women working in its Mumbai office out to the village of Jakhangaon in Satara district to take part in water conservation measures being implemented there.

Watch this video to learn about the “unforgettable experiences” they had while getting trained by our team and while offering shramdan alongside the villagers:

We’d like to thank Team ABP Majha for raising the morale of the villagers as well as of our team members!

And now for a quick update: Between 8th and 16th March, our training centres have hosted a total of 24 batches. Villagers from the following talukas have attended the workshops during this period: Kalamb, Kaij, Ambajogai, Nilanga, Bhoom, Paranda, Koregaon, Jath, Atpadi, Sangola, Akot, Arvi, Uttar Solapur, Khatav, Dharur and Phulambri.

Warm regards,

Team Paani Foundation

Our Weekly Newsletter – Edition 3 (March 8, 2017)

As we conduct training sessions for Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2017, we keep coming across examples of commitment that leave us touched. Last week, our participants Amol Kathode and Gita Metange left pressing personal commitments aside in favour of the larger cause of water conservation for their village.

Kathode’s grandmother passed away on the third day of training. And Metange’s younger sister’s wedding date clashed with the training. Yet both of them left for their villages only after completing all the sessions. It is incidents such as these that make us believe in our cause that much more!

Another inspiring story that we’d like to share with you is about Pratapsinh Pardeshi, an 82-year-old retired air force officer from Pathri village in Solapur district. We find this senior citizen displaying a young man’s zeal while taking the lead in organising training sessions, Gram Sabhas, Shivar Pheris (survey tours) and even bus bookings for the participants of our training programmes! A few days ago, he attended the Shivar Pheri at Belati village and even offered shramdan to build a contour trench despite the scorching heat. Pardeshi’s enthusiasm has upped the morale of the participants. And, needless to say, ours.

Pratapsinh Pardeshi

We also received this moving note from one of our trainers:

“Many of the workshop participants treat us as if we are their teachers who know a lot. But I often find myself learning life lessons from them. Like Abhay Todkar and Dattatray Waghmode. These young men from Man taluka in Satara district, despite facing mobility issues, threw themselves into the training sessions for our Water Cup 2017.

Part of the training involved taking a three-km Shivar Pheri of the open space and surroundings outside Hivre village, where some great water conservation measures have been implemented. To cut a long story short, Todkar and Waghmode completed the walk without any help and with a sense of joy. This showed us a thing or two about dedication and getting the job done, and made us feel utterly humbled and inspired. I am sure that if all our workshop participants are similarly dedicated, we will go a long way towards tackling water scarcity in Maharashtra.”

Abhay and Dattatray

As you know, here at Paani Foundation, our current focus is on training thousands of villagers on the science of watershed development in order to fight drought. This critical mission would remain only on paper were it not for our highly motivated trainers. Such as Ghanshyam Ramchandra Shinde, for instance. A former training participant — he took part in Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2016 — now he spreads our message of water conservation far and wide.


Hailing from Jaigaon village in Satara district, Shinde works for the Indian Air Force. Between 2013 to 2015, he got training at a base in the remote mountainous region of Ladakh, and got his posting at Pune. Shinde not only took 40 days off from his job just to participate in the competition that was held last year, but he and his friends also brought together opposing factions in the village, and had them work in unison to put their best foot forward for Water Cup 2016. These efforts bore fruit, and their village placed second in the competition.

Shinde has always been driven to work on social development projects. When we announced we’d need technical trainers for Water Cup 2017, Shinde stepped forward once again. As a full-fledged trainer, he has devoted himself to the mission of making villages water-sufficient. For this purpose, he has taken two whole months off, and is imparting training at Velu village. With highly committed folk like Ghanshyam Shinde on board, we are sure that we will achieve the objectives that we are working towards since early last year!

A quick update: Between 1st and 7th March, our training centres have hosted a total of 15 batches. Villagers from the following talukas have attended the workshops during this period: Ambajogai, Kaij, Kalamb, Dharur, Khultabad, Bhoom, Paranda, Phulambri, Khanapur, Atpadi, Purandar, Sangola, Uttar Solapur, Umarkhed and Arvi. Two new training centres have also been set up this month at Seluamba and Ambajogai villages.

That’s it from us for now. Thank you very much for all your support so far!

Our Weekly Newsletter – Edition 2 (Feb 28, 2017)

In training, there is nothing as valuable as experience. And when that experience involves a bit of meaningful sightseeing, it is all the more welcome! One of the major activities of our four-day training programme on watershed development involves a visit to the village surroundings (Shivar Pheri), so that the participants can see the work that has been implemented in the village and gauge the potential for further such work.

The visit also gives our participants insight into water and soil management based on the geographical features of the village. This knowledge helps them immensely when they compete during the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup (which will start on 8th April this year). There’s nothing like learning firsthand!

Shivar Pheri

When you go to a doctor, she diagnoses your illness based on the symptoms you give her. Similarly, villagers who participate in our training programmes become ‘water doctors’ during the residential workshop!

They fill up the ‘Jal Arogya and Village Health’ form that helps them figure out if their village has plenty or scarce water with the help of questions like: How much rainfall did the village receive last year? How many water tankers did they procure last year? How does water scarcity affect girls’ education in their village? How deep has the water level sunk in the borewells? And so on.

This form plays a big role in helping them realise that just as the host village is water-abundant despite tough conditions, so can their own village be if they take up watershed development and management work seriously.

Heartwarming story of the week: Women from Janori village made this moving appeal soon after attending the training programme in Wathoda last week: “We want our family members to not spend any money on our funeral once we are gone; instead, we urge them to use that money on improving the conditions of our village today!”

Between 16th and 28th February, our 19 training centres have hosted a total of 32 batches comprising around 40 villagers per batch. Villagers from the following talukas have attended the workshops during this period: Arvi, Umarkhed, Patur, Kalamb, Dharni, Akot, Karanja, Barshitakli, Khultabad, Phulambri, Nilanga, Kaij, Dharur, Man, Atpadi, Jath, Khanapur, Indapur, Purandar, Koregaon, Bhoom and Ausa.

That’s it from us for now. Thank you very much for all your support so far!

Our Weekly Newsletter – Edition 1 (Feb 20, 2017)

We are very happy to let you know that 2,024 villages applied to participate in Satyamev Jayate Water Cup’s second edition! Paani Foundation will organise the competition in 30 talukas of Maharashtra from 8th April to 22nd May, 2017.

It is through a four-day residential training programme on the issue of watershed development that we strive to empower the villagers and deepen their interest in and knowledge of water conservation. The workshop employs a variety of tools including short films created by our team, visit to the village surroundings (Shivar Pheri), talks by inspiring leaders, group discussions, role-plays, games and songs.

Between 4th and 15th February, all of our 19 training centres have become operational – six in Marathwada, six in Western Maharashtra and seven in Vidarbha. They have hosted a total of 34 batches comprising 40 villagers per batch and the response has been truly wonderful!

The villages where we have set up the training centres are Sawanga, Gavhankund, Bori, Karajgaon, Wathoda, Porgavhan, Shepwadi, Patoda, Khapartone, Hivre, Nalawadewadi, Anpatwadi, Jaigaon, Jakhangaon and Velu (winner of Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2016).

Villagers from the following talukas have attended the workshops so far: Arvi, Warud, Umarkhed, Patur, Kalamb, Dharni, Akot, Karanja, Ralegaon, Barshitakli, Khultabad, Phulambri, Nilanga, Kaij, Bhoom, Paranda, Ausa, Ambajogai, Man, Khatav, Atpadi, Jath, Khanapur, Indapur, Purandar, and Uttar Solapur.

Every week, we will bring to you short updates about our work since your interest in this work means a lot to us. In fact, we believe that Maharashtra can become drought-free only when students, farmers, working professionals, industrialists… in a word, millions of people from different walks of life join this movement. So, please feel free to share your feedback and ideas with us.

Goodbyes, even temporary ones, can be hard. No wonder then, that when one of our workshops concluded last week, 13 women participants from Nilanga taluka in Latur district could not hold back their tears. They even requested our team to let them attend the next batch of training, and added, “These workshops have not only dealt with water conservation issues, but have also empowered us and helped us to explore our potential.” No wonder, then, the tears at parting.

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This image is from one of the several workshops that our trainers conducted for college students in January.

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This image lists the talukas selected for Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2017.

That’s it from us for now. Thank you very much for all your support so far!