Voices From the Field

The Joint initiative for Village Advancement Looks Beyond Numbers
Mar 19, 2015 10:30 AM ET


In 2011, Sam Allen, Deere & Company’s Chairman and CEO, led a team from John Deere on a week-long corporate service experience in Rajasthan, India. Following this engagement, the John Deere Foundation decided to fund a five-year community development project in three rural villages. Focused on three key areas—agriculture and income security, education, and infrastructure—the project, created in partnership with PYXERA Global, seeks to foster economic growth and improve the quality of life for those residing in these villages.

Following a needs assessment in the fall of 2012, the Joint Initiative for Village Advancement (JIVA) was up and running by January 2013. The project’s multipronged approach includes renovating schools, training farmers in new agricultural practices, and increasing opportunities for children to stay and perform better in school. In less than two years, the results have been extraordinary:

  • 100 percent of all drop-outs are enrolled in JIVA’s after-school tutoring program
  • More than 80 percent of students enrolled in the program showed improved school exam scores
  • More than 120 percent increase in students passing the Class 10 Open Exam from 2013 to 2014
  • More than 70 percent of participating farmers have adopted some improved agricultural practice
  • Close to 15 percent of all farmers have adopted a diversified cropping system with higher-value crops
  • 138 farmers have increased profits by more than $2,800 collectively

Read more at The New Global Citizen.