CYSD, a non-profit development organization established in 1982, has been working towards improving the quality of lives of tribal and rural poor in Odisha. The centre has primary focus on eradicating extreme poverty and hunger, promoting participatory governance through Community led Accountability process. The organisation has carved out four coherent and reinforcing strategic actions, such as; Building Sustainable Livelihoods; Fostering Inclusive Governance; Advocating for Responsive State; and Reducing Disaster Vulnerability and Addressing Climate Change Concerns to realize its mission and vision.
The livelihood interventions are intended towards food and nutrition security; promotion of skill and entrepreneurship for better employability of the youth; and income enhancement opportunities for rural poor, more particularly the tribals. The pilots of CYSD including promotion of Women Self-Help Groups in 1980’s; watershed development in 1990’s; agro-forestry and collective farming in 2000’s have become mainstream activities by several CSOs and the Government.
Efforts are afoot towards strengthening local governance institutions, facilitating citizen-led monitoring and processes to ensure realisation of rights of the people including Right to Food, Right to Education, Right to Information, Forest Rights Act, MGNREGA etc. The organisation has also successfully facilitated and experienced roll out of different social accountability tools (Community Score Card, Citizen Report Card etc.); community monitoring of Public Distribution System (PDS), Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS), School Education, Maternal & Child Health and WASH; social audit of MGNREGS; budget analysis & budget tracking at state and district level. About 2117 Community Based Organizations (CBOs) involving 40000 plus members have been strengthened to complement the larger governance initiatives in the state. 85 Community Leaders have been empowered through capacity building programmes helping them to understand their community and the society as a whole and set the agenda for promoting community development initiatives focusing on equity and inclusion. More than a thousand youth are sensitized on their local issues, especially pertaining to women and the physically challenged and are connected with the panchayat and block administration to resolve those issues.
CYSD has taken initiatives to make the State responsive to the inclusive development agenda. In this regard, regular dialogue/consultations are organized in the State under the banner of Odisha Development Initiative; bringing the civil society, government, academia, research institutions and private sector together deliberating upon the development issues and building synergy among different actors to take the development agenda forward.
CYSD has an identity as a strong regional player in disaster preparedness & response and has enhanced its efforts towards innovating climate change adaptation practices and research. In this process, the organisation has a great learning from the experiences in responding to Super Cyclone -1999, very severe cyclonic storm Phailin – 2013, Hudhud- 2014, Titli – 2018, Fani – 2019 and Super Cyclonic Storm Amphan – 2020, COVID-19 Pandemic and Floods 2020 in Odisha with regard to relief, rehabilitation and restoration activities undertaken in convergence with government and partnering with INGOs, civil society and the private sector.
Outreach: Currently, CYSD reaches out to 17.5 lakh population spread over 8800 villages in 102 blocks of 12 districts in Odisha including 8 tribal Districts of like Koraput, Malkangiri, Rayagada, Mayurbhanj Keonjhar, Sundargarh, Kalahandi and Bolangiri. However, the Organisation covers all the districts of Odisha indirectly through partner networks.