About the project - YPS is very active in farming initiatives in the region. There are a lot of fruits grown in the region, which are primarily sold to nearby markets. YPS is involved in conducting sessions on technical support, seeds and fertilisers, demonstrations of new crops and educating on packaging and grading.
The team now wants to introduce new and better return crops for the locals, to increase their earnings. However, a lot of education and training needs to be imparted for the same. Volunteers will be very useful in creation and design of training material, helping in conducting workshops as well as imparting training where relevant. Volunteers may also recommend value addition processes, to existing crops to increase returns.
Typical work day - A typical work day will involve 4-6 hrs of work, and a lot of interaction with the locals. Volunteers may also have to travel between the villages covered in the project scope, in such cases travel will be arranged by YPS and volunteers will be accompanied by staff.
Evenings and weekends are free for leisure and going around.
Yerala Projects Society is a non government organisation working at the grassroots. The core project area comprises of 22 villages around Jalihal, in Sangli district and all activities are aimed towards integrated rural development. YPS has established a digital school for 8th - 10th std along with junior college for Science. A Science centre established here is to promote scientific approach in children and to be curious through handling 87 indoor & outdoor exhibits. YPS has also established a Community Radio station Yeralavani 91.2 FM for localised information and communication with people living in the area. The well developed campus has staying arrangements and meals facility through mess. The organisation is also working on several farming initiatives for the locals.
Located in the state of Maharashtra, Sangli is often called the turmeric city of Asia due to the high volume of production and trade. The district is a large industrial belt, housing many sugar factories and is also known for fruit production - primarily grapes and pomegranates.
The core project area Jalihal, is situated about 145 km from Sangli town very close to the Karnataka border. The language here is an interesting mix of Marathi and Kannada, with many people being more proficient in Kannada due to the proximity to Karnataka.
How to get there -
The project area can be reached from Sangli town, or even Karnataka if one is travelling from that direction.
By air - Belgaum (121 km), Pune (245 km)
By rail station - Sangli
By road - Pune (245 km), Mumbai (375 km)
Sangli is very well connected, with trains and buses plying from Mumbai, Pune and Bangalore. Jalihal is another 145 km from Sangli.
Alternately, if coming from Karnataka one can directly reach Bijapur which is 35 km from Jalihal.
The project area is located in the middle of around 22 villages. Volunteers can spend their evenings cycling and exploring the nearby area, river. There are some light day treks that can also be done nearby hills, and number of 1-2 day trips that can be planned to Bikapur, Hampi, Almatty dam, Gokak waterfalls etc.
Leisure inclusions - As part of the project, there will be some time allotted for local experiences. These will be great for volunteers to get a feel of the place, meet and interact with the community and become truly 'little local'. These activities will vary basis season, but will include things like community interaction, sampling and cooking local meals, local festivals and markets, local farming and even a guest show on the community radio if you want!