Supporting Parliamentarians on Analysis and Research in the Constituency (SPARC)

The Tata Trusts, through their implementation partner Swaniti, established the ‘Supporting Parliamentarians on Analysis and Research in the Constituency’ (SPARC) fellowship in 2016. The initiative places professionally trained individuals as support staff for members of parliament, to enable them to track and drive development in their respective constituencies. Associates are responsible not just for designing a programme relevant to the constituency but also for overcoming specific issues by mobilising funds and/or piloting solution(s) that can be scaled-up across the constituency. The associates focus on specific development programmes in the area of gender, health, education and livelihood. In the first year of the fellowship, the programme covered 23 states with 20 fellows working in 20 constituencies in 16 states is the implementation partner.

The concept fills the gap in terms of designing, monitoring and implementing projects relevant to the region in order to maximise impact.

The SPARC initiative aims to:
  • Promote constituency development by improving efficiency in the delivery of government programmes, increasing the amount of funds allocated to rural development, and improving the ecosystem of the constituencies in which the fellows are placed.
  • Attract and retain the best professional talent to work in the governance space to improve overall efficiency of development initiatives.
Some of the main projects under this initiative are directed towards:
  • Public health – The implementation of insurance schemes, development of anganwadis, and the introduction of menstrual hygiene machines in schools have been the key highlights here.
  • Social welfare – Under this initiative, the Trusts have helped the cause of installing solar street lights and implementing solid waste management projects.
  • Employment – The Trusts have focused on the implementation of Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) schemes, setting-up of artificial insemination centres and the placement of youth through Job fairs.
  • Education – The Trusts have endeavoured to improve the learning quality of schools and initiated the installation of computer labs in schools.

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