Rural Reconstruction Nepal (RRN)
Rural Reconstruction Nepal (RRN)
In the year 1989, a group of graduates from the Institute of Agriculture and Animal Science (IAAS) in Chitwan, Nepal decided to form a development organization towards contributing for the overall development of the country. Accordingly, ‘Grass Roots Institute for Training and Services-Nepal (GRITS-Nepal) was established in the same year. Later as a consequence of the impression received from the visit of RRN’s one of the Executive Board members to the International Institute of Rural Reconstruction (IIRR) in the Philippines, this was renamed as Rural Reconstruction Nepal - RRN. Since then, this organisation started working in rural empowerment and socio-economic reconstruction from the perspective of human rights, which became focus of many national and international agencies in recent times.
With the passage of time, RRN has expanded to one of the fast growing NGOs in Nepal in terms of the programme diversity as well as the geographical area coverage by programme activities and the size of the organisation. RRN is engaged in implementing integrated community development programmes at grassroots and policy advocacy, lobbying and networking at local, national and international levels for the cause of protecting and promoting human rights and social justice of the so far excluded people and establishing sustainable peace. RRN enjoys the Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations. RRN is also accredited to the Global Environment Facility (GEF). Currently, it is hosting the Regional Secretariat of the South Asia Alliance for Poverty Eradication (SAAPE) – a regional network of mass based civil society organisations and individuals, and International Secretariat of LDC Watch: two of several of RRN’s civil society alliances that are helping in fight for poverty eradication and the realisation of human rights, democracy and peace.
Remaining within the centre of Credo of the Rural Reconstruction Movement, RRN has been working with the poor and disadvantaged rural communities for the past one and half decade. During this period, based on the four-fold approach of rural reconstruction - education, health, livelihood and self-government, it has implemented numerous development programmes and projects to address the crucial problems of the country and people. These include education, healthcare, natural resource management, empowerment of women, children and the Dalit, and ethnic minority groups. Besides, it has also implemented activities that produced quick impacts on the community within a short period. Such activities included the emergency relief and rehabilitation, rural infrastructure development, life skill development, and group savings and credit programmes, among others.
RRN, with the continuous engagement of more than 600 staff and volunteers, has successfully implemented various integrated community development programmes and projects in more than 30 districts of the country [See RRN Working Districts] ; covering Mountainous, Middle Hills and Lowlands (Tarai) ecological zones. These programmes accrued benefits to some 350,000 households.
One of the key factors that led RRN to significant achievements in its efforts to organisational strengthening as well as programme implementation has been attributed to the unique culture it has developed through its own experiences and the lessons learned over time. This demonstrates that a development organisation like RRN needs a culture that is congenial for its operation and undertaking development activities.
RRN’s mission is to improve the lives of the poorest rural people, particularly rural women, peasants, landless people and other disadvantaged and socially oppressed strata of Nepalese society, by providing them opportunities for their own socio-economic empowerment.
RRN’s strategic objective is to empower people through;
The rural poor in countries such as Nepal are confronted by four basic, interlocking problems: poverty, ignorance, disease, and civic inertia
Because the rural poor comprise two thirds of the world’s population, social peace will always remain an unattainable dream unless the rural poor are able to solve their basic problems, and achieve a standard of living equal to that of the rest of society
The rural poor have the potential powers for self-development, what they lack is the opportunity to release and develop these powers
The rural poor also have personal dignity and, should, therefore, be regarded with respect, not pity.
RRN subscribes to the philosophy and principles of the International Rural Reconstruction Movement. The Rural Reconstruction ethics and philosophy are encapsulated in the following credo:
RRN Strategy and Approach
RRN actively integrates a rights based approach of pro-poor development into all areas of its work. This approach is founded on the conviction that each and every human being is a holder of rights and that promoting human rights is an integral part of improving development in Nepal. A right entails an obligation on the part of the government to respect, promote, protect, and fulfil it. The legal and normative character of human rights and the associated government obligations are based on the international human rights treaties and the national laws.
Raise awareness and promote policy changes through policy research, advocacy and lobbying at local, national and international levels on the root causes of poverty, the problems of the poor, social, economic and cultural rights and the right to development.