Enabling Rural Households

Key Issues

  • Effective agri-extensions services for small and marginal farmers
  • 70% of 100 million small and marginal farmers don’t have access to modern technology and extension services
  • 25 crore (84%) small business in rural areas don’t employ anyone apart from family members

Our Solution

Develop a community owned farmer platform for knowledge sharing, improved practice, inputs supplies and services in Agri and off farm areas for small and marginal farmers

MITRA aims to address the complex problem of ineffective agri extension service for small and marginal farmers. A unique feature of the MITRA project is the collaboration of diverse groups and organizations that have a stake in the problem to work together to find impactful solutions.

Currently spread over 15 districts in seven states, this innovative hands-on program is modeled on peer learning; but more importantly it aims to empower farmers to become agri-entrepreneurs by accessing information with the help of new age technology to improve agri-practices.

  • 85% Indian farmers are small and marginal cultivators (less than five acre)
  • Lack of access to quality input services which could increase 45% productivity
  • 86 % of small and 72% marginal farmers do not have access to institutional credit
  • Poor irrigation practices. More than 60% of total farming land is not irrigated. India uses double the amount of water for major crops in comparison with China, US or even Brazil
  • 59% farmers do not have access to technology or technical information
  • MITRA focuses on agriculture and non-farm initiatives
  • We support farmers by helping them to access marketing information, improve their knowledge and skills on crop-based package of practices apart from gaining access to existing government extension delivery schemes and services
  • MITRA collaborates with knowledge partners to encourage change and ensure best practices are available to the farmers
  • We connect local communities with the private sector and expedite a seamless engagement
  • Train and encourage local youth to adopt agri-extension services as a career option and as a self-employment opportunity
  • Facilitate with all key stake holders to leverage their strengths in achieving better farming practices for the community and ensure desired outcomes through rigorous monitoring and evaluation
  • Finally establish a community model of peer learning by identifying and training  motivated “lead farmers” who in turn will be a role model and take the  lead to  mentor his community
  1. Shift the emphasis on the problem and be open to new learnings
  2. Increased productivity per acre in the major crops
  3. Strengthen agriculture extension service delivery
  4. Ensure economic viability for the farmer


MITRA Brochure

Key Issues

  • More than 2.8 crore (82%) businesses in rural India do not employ workers outside the household (total 3.5 crore).
  • Less than 14 percent of enterprises in India are owned by women and that less than 15 percent among these (less than 3% of overall enterprises) employ workers.

Our Solution

To identify and nurture potential entrepreneurs among rural women and support them to establish sustainable businesses that can add value and create employment.

At Dr Reddy’s Foundation we believe that when you educate girls and empower women we take big strides towards sustainable development.  Our education and skilling programs have supported enthusiastic girls to steer away from child marriages and take up careers. Today many of them apart from being self-sufficient and confident young adults support their families and siblings economically.

Pushti is an effort by Dr Reddy’s Foundation to fill the gap of lack of support systems for potential rural women entrepreneurs to set up large businesses. The project encourages women to take a lead to address the lack of availability of affordable and nutritious snacks for children in rural India by making healthy snacks on a large business model scale.

  • Emboldening women to move from a self-help group/livelihood model to think about a business model
  • Getting a buy-in from their spouses for the seed investment

Identify rural women with the innate passion and drive to set up their own business and become independent. Provide such women handholding and need based support in establishing and running their businesses, in the areas like: Market Research and Business Planning, Financial linkages, Technical/ domain skills and quality assurance, Management skills and digital literacy.

The Women Entrepreneurs will also be provided mentoring by existing successful rural entrepreneurs

  1. A rural enterprise incubation model with end to end support to set up large businesses.
  2. Creating a network of successful and financially independent women entrepreneurs in rural areas.