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Rural Development

Micro Finance

To help improve the poor living conditions and lack of economic opportunities in rural areas, RTU started a Rural Development Programme in 1992. Self Help Groups, micro credit systems and potable water support have been implemented in 26 remote villages of Theni & Dindigul districts as long term solutions.

We helped set up Self Help Groups where each member saves a small amount every month and pools it into the group (a micro credit system).  Once the savings reach a set level the group starts to give loans to its members for income generating activities (for example to buy a cow for milk).

This is a long-term solution that means they no longer have to rely on moneylenders who charge high interest rates.  Meetings are held with the RTU staff so the members can discuss any problems they might be facing as well as getting assistance with access to government subsidized loans and helping them make links with banks. We now have 1276 members in micro credit societies.


Irulayamman Nagar Self Help Group President


Case study -1
My name is Valli. My husband died 3 years ago leaving me and my 3 children. We were living in Periyakulam on the riverbank in a hut, without any source of income. In Feb 2003. RTU came forward to sponsor a few families like us. It has built 8 houses for us. But we were lacking basic necessities like, drinking water and electricity.

In the same year a self-help group was formed by RTU. The main purpose of this group was our overall development with focus on economic development. Therefore savings and credit was one of the main activities of our group from its inception. Every member has saved an amount of Rs.10 in each month and collected a substantial amount. The group started disbursing small loans to the needy members on a nominal interest. Thus we were relieved from the clutches of local moneylenders. RTU also facilitated us to avail of a government loan of Rs.25,000/-


Income Generating Activities

Case study -2
I am Latha from the Village Kamatchiammal Koil. I was living in a hut with my husband, 2 children and mother-in-law. Being landless and with no assets life was really a struggle for us. Our earnings have seldom been enough to meet the family's day to day needs. We never stopped dreaming of a more secure and contented life. But our minds have always been preoccupied with survival. Three years ago RTU started a saving and credit group for women in our village. I also joined the group. Joining the group has proved to be a turning point in my life. The group became a place where I could learn about my health and that of




my children, about my rights as a woman, and about doing business. I began to save in the group scheme Rs.50/- per month. My vision and self esteem grew. On 18/8/05 I took a loan from RTU and Rs.2000 from the group and purchased a cow. The cow gave more than sufficient milk for our family use. During the past 292 days this cowgave us 1922 litre milk. I spent Rs.26.50 daily for feeding the cow. We took 1 litre milk daily for our own consumption and sold the rest of the milk and improved our economic status. We have constructed a house to live in and posses golden ornaments for our daughter after meeting the school expenses of our children through this income. I am confident, my children will become professionals.