Supporting Mothers: Bansi Offers Fish at 50% Discount to Pregnant and Lactating Women


In the heart of Dharni Block, Maharashtra, Bansi Sawalkar’s (name changed) journey with pisciculture not only transformed her family’s livelihood but also became a beacon of community support. For six years, Action Against Hunger has been dedicated to uplifting 39 villages, focusing on nutrition, health, food security, and education. In February 2023, they introduced a Fish Farming Project in collaboration with Jaljeevika, aiming to bolster Food Security and Livelihoods (FSL) in the region.

Bansi, a registered beneficiary immersed in maternal and child nutrition education, caught the attention of the ACF field team with her 20×20 meter farm pond. Initially hesitant due to childcare duties, Bansi entrusted her husband and father-in-law to attend training at the Titamba Aqua school. Equipped with knowledge of pond preparation, fish species, and management techniques, they returned to kickstart the project.

The journey wasn’t without challenges. After meticulous pond cleaning and embankment leveling, Bansi and her family embraced integrated farming, planting papayas, lemons, custard apples, guavas, and vegetables like drumsticks around the pond. Their dedication saw the pond stocked with fish by September, though heavy rains later caused losses, testing their resilience.

With support from Action Against Hunger, Bansi rebounded in March 2024 by releasing 200 Pangasius fish hatchlings. Diligently adhering to water quality checks and integrating pond water for crop irrigation, she optimized their agricultural yield. By June 2024, their efforts bore fruit—literally and figuratively—as the fish grew to 400-500 grams, ready for market.

Bansi demonstrated her entrepreneurial spirit by initiating fish sales in Salai and nearby villages at Rs 200 per kg. Showing her community-focused approach, she provided a 50% discount to 8 pregnant and lactating women, creating a supportive network.

For Bansi Sawalkar (name changed) and her family, the income from fish farming has not only complemented their farming but has also brought a sense of fulfillment and stability. Their journey underscores how empowerment and perseverance can ripple through communities, igniting hope and prosperity where it’s needed most.