Watershed Voices

Voices from the Darewadi Watershed

In 1996, Darewadi, a remote, drought prone village in the reain shadow region of Maharashtra was a picture of despair. Villagers had to migrate to resource-endowed areas working  seasonally at sugarcane cutting or in brick kiln of contractors. At this point, some of the villagers approached WOTR to undertake watershed development activities in their village.

Kachner- A Story of Resilience

Kachner a Marathwada village consisting of 6 tandas (hamlets) in Aurangabad district of Maharashtra. This story is about the resilience of people of Kachner , to strive for a better life by addressing issues of land degradation, water scarcity and distress migration through Participatory Integrated Watershed Development


Wankute is a dry, wind-blown village of the pathars of the Western Ghats that had very little access to water. Women trudged up and down the steep slopes to fetch whatever little water they could get. Wankute story of its people, partnerships and perseverance today has garnered it the JSW-TOI Earth Care Award. A story worth reading, indeed.

Pimpale – A Magical Transformation

Village Pimpale in district Nandurbar of North Maharashtra was just another of those barren and isolated places the residents of which had either resigned to their fate or migrated to the cities in search of work. The lack of water had turned the fields dry. The land was parched. Most of the houses had been abandoned. And there was this thick blanket of despair and misery.But Pimpale has cast off its slough of despondency forever. Those who had migrated returned to tend to their once forsaken fields.


Visitors to Purushwadi, a charming village, will vouch for the fact that there is substance in the theory and implementation of how a collective effort can turn apparently impossible tasks into dreams come true. At Purushwadi, the villagers and WOTR have achieved this, working shoulder to shoulder to turn barren land into farms.


When the fiery furnaces of nearby charcoal kilns were fed with wood from Mhaswandi verdant forests, its residents were happy, cash-rich and grateful to the rich timber merchants who acted as middlemen in the sale. It took a handful of years for the forests, the merchants and the money to vanish. Mhaswandi of today has won several awards for its efforts at Watershed Development and stands as an example of what a community can do when it determines to change.