Ambuja Cement Foundation (ACF), the CSR arm of Ambuja Cements, has been recognized with the ‘Best Project Implementation Agency’ award by NABARD for its work in the Watershed Development Projects in Darlaghat village. This award ceremony was organized by NABARD in February during the State Credit Seminar 2022-23 in Himachal Pradesh.
As water scarcity stood as a challenge in Darlaghat, ACF determined that a watershed development project would be the most effective solution to the issues of soil erosion, eradication of green cover, and reduction in agricultural production in the region. The Company approached NABARD for water solutions and, using a Ridge-to-Valley approach worked on the problem of proper management of land and available water.
Mr. Neeraj Akhoury, CEO India Holcim and MD & CEO of Ambuja Cements Ltd. said, “As a socially responsible organization, development and progress of underprivileged communities has always been an integral aspect of our core philosophy. We aim to tackle the water scarcity issue in the region through our partnership to improve the lives of people in these communities. This recognition bestowed upon us by NABARD will further strengthen our commitment to build sustainable solutions for communities and contribute towards circular economies of the future.”
ACF through watershed committees ensured community collective action by first creating awareness and then constructing farm bunds, ponds, water storage tanks, and Gabion structures to prevent soil erosion in watershed project areas. This resulted in a rise in the water table, an increase in green cover, and fodder for dairy farming.
“Our aim at Ambuja Foundation is to create community ownership by building people’s institutions. Since we have worked on this project, we have seen some immense dedication by the community leading to such a success. We are honored to receive credit from NABARD and being one of our longest and strongest partners we aim to achieve much more together, says Pearl Tiwari, Director & CEO, Ambuja Cement Foundation.
Furthermore, around 5,874 hectares of land are being treated in close collaboration with NABARD through various water management interventions and community participation.
The state government honored ACF for its implemented strategies which led to the totality of 11 watersheds in the state. This award was facilitated by Shri. Virender Kanwer, Honourable Minister of Agriculture and Animal Husbandry and Minister of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj, Government of Himachal Pradesh, along with other dignitaries such as the Additional Chief Secretary, Finance and Registrar of Cooperative Societies HP, GM RBI Himachal Pradesh, and other NABARD officials.
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