Khaprakhol tehsil in Balangir district in Odisha is a highly forested region with a predominant tribal population. The district has some of the highest rates of migration in the state with 23,000 migrant returnees during the COVID period (as per govt data). The primary livelihoods practiced by the communities in the region include agriculture and livestock rearing. Livestock mortality is a key issue for the community with an average loss of 20% in chicks and 15% in goats. With vaccines now available within the district itself, storing is a huge issue with frequent long durations of power cuts. Many villages in the region are still unelectrified.
Vikalpa NGO works towards livelihood promotion by forming Farmer Producer Groups, Self Help Groups for horticulture, agriculture and livestock. Post COVID, they have been supporting migrant returnees by forming producer groups through their livestock program.
Earlier, the NGO would procure vaccinations from the district head quarter which is 75 kms away from this region and some remote villages which are 20-30 kms further in. This resulted in irregular vaccination practices leading to mortality. Sure Chill, a solar powered vaccine refrigerator is the selected solution as other solutions in the range are of very large capacities (300-500 lts) which is unnecessary for small scale collectives leading to underutilization. Being solar powered, the unit has a hold time of 96 hours. The 25 litre vaccine refrigerator owned by one of the producer groups is run in the form of a service model where the producer group procures the vaccines from the district headquarter, stores the vaccines and the community purchases it from them for very nominal rates i.e. INR 1 for a vaccine for chicks and INR 10 for a vaccine for goats.
Two more solar-powered vaccination units will be installed in partnership with Vikalpa and the govt veterinary department who will also leverage funds for the same. As the need for decentralisation of services is very high, solar-powered micro-enterprises will be set up. More interventions in poultry and cotton value chains to meet the livelihood needs of the communities.
400+ Poultry Farmers to Benefit: With vaccines available locally due to the decentralised set up, communities can vaccinate their livestock regularly which will lead to reduced mortality. A total of 400+ poultry farmers will benefit with this intervention.
Reduced Wastage: With the service model, the producer group will have an increase in income as well as reduced wastage of vaccinations. For instance, in the month prior to the intervention, vaccines worth INR 8,000 (of a total procurement of INR 22,000 worth of vaccines) were wasted due to power cuts.