Project information

Enterprise development in Nepal

To provide loans, training and livelihoods to thousands of poor families in West Nepal, largely affected by the ten year Maoist conflict.

May 2012 - December 2015

Charity information: Shivia

Shivia logo
  • Need


    The project is trying to give a chance to the Tharu population of West Nepal to lift themselves out of poverty through productive enterprise.The Tharus are one of the poorest populations negatively affected by years of bonded labour, political tensions and hard working conditions.


    Shivia will work with its local partner BASE to provide training and loans to women to start productive enterprises. These Tharu women are not part of the caste system but are akin to Dalits, at the bottom. It is hard for them to get normal jobs in society. Through organising them into groups, providing them with basic and financial literacy and skills-based training, as well as small loans, we will help them to lift themselves and their families out of poverty.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To increase the household socio-economic income and status of Tharu communities in West Nepal.


    » Provision of training and loans to enable them to start productive, market-driven enterprises. Since they are largely illiterate training is key.

    What success will look like

    Success will be when the women (many who lost their husbands in the ten year conflict) have hope again, when they see their enterprises working and ultimately when income increases

  • Impact


    Beneficiaries currently have a poor diet of two meals per day; we hope with additional income that this will change to three. They are largely illterate; we plan to empower them by enabling them to read and write and financially plan. They do not have their children in school; this will be the greatest long-term change. And access to clean water will become available. We will demonstrate success through ongoing monitoring through our annual Social Impact Assessments completed by each client.


    The greatest risks are that the women cannot attend trainings due to lack of time, that husbands do not want them to be empowered, that their businesses fail and they lose hope again, that they fall into arrears and cannot repay their loans and they spend their loans on other purposes such as during festival time or for medical emergencies. Research into market-driven enterprises is key as is providing training near to the villages so that the women can attend. Providing loans to groups helps.


    Through quarterly reports, calls and we welcome any donors to come and visit if they wish to.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £10,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £9,500 Loans 120 loans and training
      £500 Admin Passbooks, training materials etc
  • Background


    The project is located in Dang region in Mid-West Nepal and is the Maoist heartland, whereby most of the landless Tharus were deeply affected by the ten year Maoist conflict. The project takes place over widely dispersed rural villages, some up to hundreds of kilometers from Tulsipur, the capital town of Dang, where our local partner's office is. This is because this is where the poorest populations live.


    Members of the indigenous Tharu population will benefit from this project. We plan to lend to a further 120 or so borrowers and given that each has on average 5-6 dependents, we hope to reach out to over 650 members of the community. These Tharu people use to be bonded labourers and were "freed" in 2000 but left with nothing. They live in the Maoist heartland so were hugely affected by the 1996-2006 conflict - many lost family members as well as all their posessions.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Olly Donnelly has been working with Shivia's local partner BASE for 12 years on various development issues. Whereas Shivia provides the funding, management and social impact controls, BASE is a grass roots membership organisation working in 8 districts with over 328,000 members. The staff come from the communities, speak the language, know the needs of the clients and have their trust. This is important when implementing any grass roots development project.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Olly Donnelly

    Chief Executive. Olly has worked with BASE on various projects for 12 years and is deeply committed to empowering the Tharu population.

    Dilli Chaudhary

    President of BASE, local partner. Dilli is very keen for Tharu communities to start produtive enterprise. Shivia started this programme with Dilli.

    Churna Chaudhary (Not Related To Dilli)

    Executive Director, BASE. Churna believes that BASE's other development programmes will flourish if the communities have greater household incomes.

    Shanta Chaudhary (Not Related To Dilli And Churna!)

    Project Manager. Shanta is driving the programme and is deeply committed to her community. She has experience in microfinance, also out of Nepal.


Typical size of life-changing loan

We extend our appreciation to Shivia for creating this golden opportunity for the marginalised communities of West Nepal

Dilli Chaudhary, President, BASE