75. Maytul Nisha – The Agricultural Expert

Maytul Nisha, 46 years of age, from Gauriganj block, is a very energetic leader, motivating women not only in her own village but also in others, through her hard work, constant pile-making and accumulation of the material required to make Shivansh (18-day Method Compost or EMC). In an interview, she shared with us her story of change: “I was so incredibly poor, both in terms of resources and psychologically. I thought life will continue to be full of struggle everyday and I would just need to face this fact my entire life. I was helpless, hopeless and filled with negativity in the form of rage and aggression. My husband could not earn the money I required to run my home. My children were also living a beggar’s life. When they were little we could not provide them with proper clothes that would cover them entirely. They roamed almost naked and had several health problems. When I first heard about the SHG in my village I did not pay any heed because I had no money. But one woman, who came from outside, was very eager for me to join the SHG. When I saw her curiosity I thought that perhaps I should join the SHG. She said that we would face this problem of poverty together, and that her organization was working toward poverty reduction and women’s empowerment. So I joined the SHG and started attending the SHG meetings. The change began there. I have now undergone a number of training sessions. I have overcome poverty and this has actually boosted my positive beliefs.

“I have one and a half bigha of land, which was almost entirely barren. In January 2016 I received the EMC training at the organization’s Jais centre. This compost changed my agricultural land. I made 20-30 piles from waste and used jalkumbhi for green matter. I got great results and from that day onward I use Shivansh in my fields and also try to influence all my block’s sisters to make and use Shivansh. I would like to spread the knowledge of preparing Shivansh to this entire region.

“If the Pariyojana had not helped me, I could not have come out of my earlier mindset, the mindset of being nothing and no one.”