A female farmer in Maharashtra is increasingly participating in decision-making at her home and farm

Manisha Vinod Dhandade is a 38-year-old woman farmer from Dighi village in Wardha District of Maharashtra, living with her husband and their two children. She and her husband grow cotton on a 3-acre land and have joined the CottonConnect project in the region.

Manisha attended a gender sensitization training by Sachin Wadatkar, the CottonConnect Field Facilitator in her village. Sachin was one of the participants at the gender sensitization training conducted by IDH and decided to take his learnings to the field level by conducting a gender workshop for the farmers he is working with. Speaking about the training, she says, “All the decisions at our home and for farming were taken by my husband. While I was doing a lot of work in the farm such as weeding, fertilizer application and picking, along with female farm workers, I never made any contribution in the decisions related to farming. During the training we learnt that including women in decision making can increase the overall profitability.”

“Now my husband listens to my ideas on farming. I also regularly attend trainings conducted by CottonConnect to increase my knowledge about cotton farming. I prepare natural pesticides at home and ask him to use at the farm. From these trainings I have also understood the importance of personal protection equipment while spraying and, after my repeated insistence, my husband has started to use it. I feel confident with the exposure I receive through the trainings and am happy to contribute towards the development of our household.”

This story is part of IDH publication Bridging the Gender Gap which captures field-level stories resulting from IDH’s gender sensitization training in 2018. You can read the full report here.


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