CDM Pilot program on training of rural youth in Micro Entrepreneurship on Solar Lanterns and Fuel Efficient Stoves

A Fair Economic Development initiative of Development Focus


The India Education Programme has been implemented for last 6 years, with some good results in Jharkhand, Odisha & Chhattisgarh. The approach has been to mobilize the local communities, raise their awareness and build their capacity to claim their entitlement for access to relevant and quality primary education. The India Education Programme- implemented by 55 NGOs in 5 Clusters and 8 small grant projects, has reached more than 875 villages where community organization have been created and strengthened.

Two key initiatives: 'Earn While you Learn' (EWYL) and 'Vocational training' (VT) has value added to the program facilitating realization of objectives and goal of the Education program. While 'EWYL' has addressed education aspirations & practical difficulties of children and parents respectively positively impacting in reduced drop out and quality & relevant education, 'VT' has helped train out of school youth in self employable skills, making education/training relevant to livelihoods.

Having analyzed the livelihood demands and aspirations of the youth and possible products and markets that can be harnessed by thr youth locally, Development Focus has initiated a pilot program on Fair Economic Development and Carbon Mitigation in a major part of the program locations where the education program was implemented in the last 6 years, building upon the people's institutions that have emregeed in these poor parts of India.

The Pilot program:

Overall Objective: To enhance the quality of life of children and youth of marginalised communities in Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Orissa through Fair Economic Development and Carbon Mitigation thereby leading to socially fulfilling, and economically sustainable lives and to create sustainable livelihood opportunities for the communities.


  • To provide sustainable economic activities to young boys and girls including disabled youth who are aged between 16- 25 years
  • To reduce spending on scarce non renewable energy resources (firewood and kerosene) and use the money for other profitable initiatives, create awareness in the community on alternate energy sources and carbon mitigation
  • To create employment opportunity and entrepreneurship development among the community

Expected Output of the programme:

  • Training of 480 youth (each batch of training will be duration of 5-6 days including theory & practical)
  • 480 youth trained will earn livelihood through this programme.
  • Employment for 440 youth and business opportunity for village community.
  • 220 trainees will get 6 solar lanterns & 220 trainees will get Stove Mould and associated Tool Kit, as start up capital to initiate the programme.
  • Additional Income generation opportunities from the Rural Energy Micro Enterprise chain -for community –Artisans, etc
  • Youth will be engaged in more productive activities

Duration of program: 12 Months

Key features of the Pilot :

  1. Energy devices standardized for:
    • Ease of production/assembling by trained youth locally
    • Material substitution for FE stoves for easing 'Supply Chain Management' of critical materials and boost affordability
    • Adapted to local conditions and markets
    • Enhanced functionality and durability- mobile charging in Solar Lanterns; cement stoves
  2. Training customized to equip youth with technical and entrepreneurial skills to be successful micro entrepreneurs
  3. Trained Micro entrepreneurs anchored to the local SHGs- for nurturing and promoting their enterprises and meeting Working capital requirements
  4. Network of locally available NGOs – to select, train and handhold in establishing their micro enterprises

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Progress and experiences (Half Yearly Assessment)
  FE Stoves Solar Lanterns
Micro Entrepreneurs Trained 180 140
Avg. demand/month    
Avg. Income from the Micro Enterprise Rs. 1000/month Rs. 600/month
% of MEs coping with the demands of Micro Enterprise 50% 40%
Chhattisgarh NTC BSM SWA

Close monitoring so far and an informal mid-term assessment indicate the following opportunities and challenges:

  • A positive impact of the pilot program in providing the trained youth with an excellent opportunity for livelihood & fair economic development
  • Validation of the Pilot program, underscoring the potential for scaling up the Fair Economic Development initiative with further possibility of leveraging CDM's Carbon credit trading
  • Interest to collaborate and support scale up by
  • Difficulties by some IPs/NTCs to arrange terracotta pipes locally for FE Stoves – now addressed
  • Technical difficulties like Soldering, charging and lighting backup faced by some trained MEs and handholding NTCs – being addressed in consultation with supplier of kits, refresher training and training on trouble shooting, etc.

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