GMFWS: The nerve-centre of fish business
Godavari Mandal Fisher Women Samaikya (GMFWS), patronised by the National Fisheries Development Board (NFDB), has emerged as a powerful economic force.
Godavari Mandal Fisher Women Samaikya (GMFWS), patronised by the National Fisheries Development Board (NFDB), has emerged as a powerful economic force. The association is a 20,000 strong women force that has been making efforts towards women empowerment and promoting fish business.
Speaking to The Hans India, GMFWS president Anantha Lakshmi, who was in Guntur recently, said, “One big boost the GMFWS got was from National Fisheries Development Board director general Dr Rao. It was on his insistence that we were provided 14 big vehicles and hundreds of individual mopeds for transporting the fish. The samaikya emerged as a nerve centre for fish business. The women take care of everything once the fish have been brought from the sea. From transportation to storage, cleaning and selling at Tallarevu in East Godavari, the women handle it all.”
“About 10,000 families are currently engaged in the business of selling fish and transporting them to different locations in and around the district. The vehicles given to mandal samaikyas are a great help for supplying fresh fish. The fish are brought to the Common Facility Centre at Bhairavapalem for pressure washing and removing sand particles. Salt is applied for preserving the fish. Proposals are underway for the setting up of common facility centres in all the seven mandals,” Anantha adds.
NFDB chief executive Dr MV Rao was impressed with the enthusiasm of women and promised to give solar deep freezers and fish drying machines. About 20,000 families have converged under all the samaikyas, half of whom are engaged in non-fishing vocations.
The GMFWS president said that samaikyas of women have become so resourceful that fisherwomen from Chattisgarh, Jharkhand, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra were pouring in to receive training.
Of the Rs 10 crore that the association saves, it spends Rs 6 crore on community development and Rs 2 crore on the health of its members.
By: Ravi P Benjamin