Played a key role in repairing the pond
The pond was vital for the community’s living, but heavy rainfall damaged one of the embankments, and water and fish started to escape. The money needed for the repairs was beyond the poor villagers’ capacity. Adori Minz decided to step forward and she played a key role in repairing the pond.
Adori Minz is a middle-aged woman, belonging to the ethnic minority Santal in Bangladesh. Like many other women in her community, she works as a day-labourer in the agriculture fields close to the village. The villagers are poor and have no land of their own, but they have a pond for pisciculture and common use. The profit from the fish breeding is shared among the villagers and they have a special fund for common needs. But when the pond was damaged the fund was not enough to cover the reparation costs. The villagers tried to contact several organizations as well as the local government NGOs but to their frustration, without a positive response.
Did not want to give up
Adori Minz did not want to give up. She contacted the organizations all over again, and when she made contact with the Bangladesh Resource Centre for Indigenous Knowledge, BARCIK, someone finally listened. BARCIK initiated a group meeting with other communities that had faced similar problems. The community leaders shared their experiences and Adori listened closely to their success stories.
“At that moment I realised that if other villagers could do something, we would also be able to in our village.”
The villagers finalised the task together
The idea of repairing the pond bank by themselves was born. Adori Minz asked the headman in the village to organise a meeting, with the repairs of the pond bank on the agenda. There it was decided that one member of each family should work for two days helping to rebuild the embankment. Together, the villagers finalised the task before scheduled. Now they have started fish cultivation again and the profits will be used for the community’s development.