Problem

Weak governance is due to uninformed and disengaged elected representatives, and not because of existing systems and policies. Lack of tools to facilitate effective interaction between citizens and local government demands an urgent need to address inefficiencies in work processes and bridge information gaps.

Solution

Praja conducts research to collate and disseminate information on civic issues to citizens, media and government administration. It works closely with elected representatives to identify and address inefficiencies in their work processes, bridge the information gap, and help them take corrective measures.

What We Do

Praja Dialogue is a tool created to engage three constituents of democracy:
• Elected representatives (Councilors, MLAs, MPs)
• Government (includes administration)
• Citizens (includes media and citizen groups)
The objective is to increase interaction between citizens and elected representatives and thus foster a democratic culture of asking questions, debating and having dialogue.

The process:
1) Collect information on:
- Elected representatives on their attendance, questions asked at the session (number, type and issue), and utilization of local area development fund;
- Status of civic issues by constituencies, such as education, health, crime, civic, housing and transport
2) Analyze the data to publish periodic white papers, monthly newsletters and annual report cards on performance of elected representatives
3) Dissemination of analysis through print media, symposiums and online media
4) Capacity building for elected representatives through one-on-one meetings and workshops to explain the analysis and help them take corrective measures, so they may perform better in their roles.

PROGRAM DETAILS

Locations:
Delhi, Maharashtra
Start Year:
2008
Sectors:
Governance
Budget 2014-15 Actual:
INR 1.4 crore (USD 225,000)
Budget 2015-16 Expected:
INR 2.2 crore (USD 360,000)
Total People Reached:
788
Direct:
788
Direct outreach: Interacting with the government through symposia, regular meetings and capacity building programs. Praja interacts with NGOs and citizens through specific engagement programs. Indirect outreach: Praja circulates its reports, resources, newsletters and white papers among a targeted audience, and uses online media for wider outreach.

SUPPORT REQUIRED

Funding for Organizational Development Funding to Deliver Programs Funding for Geographical Expansion Volunteering Engagement
Praja needs funding and capacity building support to increase its outreach, and expand to new states across India. It aims to raise funds for its Mumbai chapter. Praja is also actively looking to recruit staff for its program, and to build their capacity to expand work in scale and quality.

VOICES FROM THE GROUND

About Us


Praja Foundation

ORGANIZATION DETAILS

Type:
Non-profit
Registered as:
Trust
Compliance:
FCRA, 12A, 80G
Headquarters:
Mumbai
Locations:
Delhi, Maharashtra
Year Founded:
1999
Sectors:
Governance
Full Time Staff:
30
Budget 2014-15 Actual:
INR 1.4 crore (USD 225,000)
Total People Reached:
788
Direct:
788

Leadership

Nitai Mehta, Managing Trustee
• Head of Madhu Mehta Foundation

Partners and Funders

Partners:
• Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative
• Centre for Civil Society
• Hansa Research
• Initiative for Change
• Pravin Gandhi College of Law
• TISS
• Nirmala Niketan College
• Dasra

Funders:
• Friedrich Naumann Stiftung
• Narotam Sekhsaria Foundation
• Ford Foundation
• Sir Dorabji Tata Trust
• Give India
• Dasra

Awards and Endorsements

• Pravinchandra Gandhi Award for excellence in public life, by Rotary Club of Bombay (2013-14)
• Praja’s work received about 400 media mentions in 2014-15