People First Educational Charitable Trust

People First aims to work closely with oppressed and disadvantaged communities and vulnerable individuals in breaking the centuries - old cycle of ignorance and oppression by providing opportunities for education. The trust believes the best way to achieve long - term positive social change is through education and we work in the areas of greatest need where no other education is available to the poor and oppressed. Our mission is the bringing of educational opportunity and to promote health and social rights to those to whom such opportunities have previously been denied due to poverty family circumstances or oppression. The Trust aims to work with the most marginalized me...
Jul 5, 2011

Bihar’s food security situation alarming,

Welcome food at Dadpur Village
Welcome food at Dadpur Village

Greetings to all our friends and supporters.

I would like to start with the good news. The monsoon has come and so far it is better than last year here in South Bihar. This will hopefully continue as a third of drought would be disastrous.

It is easy to imagine perhaps that India as a growing economic power is having an effect on alleviating poverty. That everybody can now afford the food they need, the housing and are receiving good medical care and education.

Please consider this report from an expert appointed by the Supreme Court to investigate hunger here in Bihar,

More than half of Bihar’s 100 million population is malnourished, while 70 percent of women and children below the poverty line (BPL) are anemic, a Supreme Court-appointed official said in a report Thursday.

“About 55 percent of the population is malnourished and 70 percent women and children below the poverty line are anemic,” said a report by Rupesh, state adviser to the commissioner of the Supreme Court-appointed committee to monitor the implementation of food-related schemes.

According to state government estimates, Bihar has 1.45 crore BPL families. However, the central government puts the figure at 65 lakh.

The report said that drought and flood have further aggravated the situation, with farmers and landless workers being forced to migrate to cities to look for jobs.

Bihar has been hit by severe drought for two consecutive years. In 2009, 26 of the 37 districts were declared drought hit. Last year, the state government declared all districts as drought hit.

“Implementation of the welfare schemes, health scheme and work schemes have not been accelerated, resulting in deterioration in the condition of the poor.”

“Our survey of status of the implementation of schemes like integrated child development scheme, mid-day meal scheme, the public distribution system, the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme….in 33 villages of seven districts shows that the government’s efforts to check malpractices are not sufficient,” the report added.

The report added that the agriculture sector has been neglected, though over 80 percent population is dependent on it for sustenance.

“Apart from major leakages and corruption, the coverage of government food schemes is so meagre that they leave huge gaping holes in the social security net, through which large numbers of most destitute people slip into starvation and hunger,” said Rupesh.

This report indicates only too clearly the reality of the situation here in the villages of Bihar. We can only do what we can locally promoting good health care practices treating malnutrition and giving a warm healthy protein rich meal.  

Please help us in our efforts.  It really does make a difference.

Please visit our Facebook page

www.facebook.com/pages/People-First-India/106083302779969 (but the Link is below)

and our website which also has direct links to Global Giving.

Thank you so much for all your support

 


Links:

Jul 5, 2011

Floods are Back

Progress Report

 Firstly may I apologize to our supporters for posting this report late, in fact this is the first report submitted to Global Giving which was not timely. There was however a reason. The Monsoon rains have come, better than last year so far in the south of Bihar which has had a two year drought, but in the north already 100 villages have been flooded.. Because the area of the flooding is outside our normal project area we were waiting for reports as our staff placed in these areas responded,

See the following press report,

Patna:  Hundreds of people in Bihar have been forced to abandon their homes as flood waters entered nearly 100 villages and rising levels of most rivers threatened to inundate many others, officials said on Saturday.
All the inundated villages were in flood-prone districts of Muzaffarpur, Gopalganj, Purnia, Araria, Saharsa, Madhepura and Bagaha, officials said.
"Water entered these villages after levels rose in all the major rivers following heavy rains in the state and the catchment areas of Nepal," a water resource department official said.
According to the Central Water Commission, the water level in major rivers - Kosi, Mahananda, Gandak, Budhi Gandak, and Bagmati - has increased since Friday.

Kosi and Bagmati are flowing above danger mark at some places. "All the rivers are in full spate following heavy rains. Some rivers may cross the red mark late Saturday or Sunday," an official said.
Officials said that after two consecutive years of drought, the fear of floods is back in Bihar with incessant rains and heavy water discharge into the Kosi river from Nepal.
However, Bihar Water Resources Development Minister Vijay Kumar Choudhary said all embankments were safe and there was no need to panic. "The government is fully ready to face any eventuality if water level in rivers create threat," he told IANS.
Choudhary said the government has taken full preparatory measures to protect embankments, but conceded that several villages in flood-prone districts face threats due to the increased water levels.
Reports suggested that the authorities have asked hundreds of people to shift to safer places following the rising water level of the Kosi. The state government has asked engineers and district officials to keep a 24-hour vigil.
Choudhary said the eastern Kosi embankment, which had breached in 2008, flooding five districts of northern Bihar, was totally safe. "We are taking care of it. There is no need to panic."
In 2008, over three million people were rendered homeless in Bihar when the Kosi river breached its bank upstream in Nepal and changed course. It was said to be the worst flood in the state in the last 50 years.
According to the water resources department, a lot of water has been discharged into the Kosi in the last few days after heavy rains in Nepal since Monday.

So once again with our local partners we are distributing humanitarian aid, blankets and medicines, water sterilising tablets and doing what we can to strengthen and save homes.There has been strengthening of the embankments, improved drainage in villages and other improvements in many villagers in the area, some with government assistance, but mostly by NGO's so it our hope these measures and others which we have been working on throught the year will prevent a full scale disaster and save many lives.

You will not have to wait 12 weeks for the next report, it will contain photographs of the work in progress and will be published within 14 days. I personally am visiting the area very soon as our contacts in the media inform us once again the government is slow to react in providing much needed assistance .

Once again thanks for your support

 

Jun 10, 2011

"The work of Rescue Junction is an absolute good"

Going Home Safe
Going Home Safe

Greetings to you all  from everyone here at Rescue Junction.

Is it really 12 weeks since our last update?,

The Title of this report is a direct quote from a recent visitor, a supporter to Rescue Junction from our visitors book.

Just to remind you of all the services the Gaya Rescue Project at our centre Rescue Junction offers,

It provides local children living in slum areas near the railway education.

It provides early intervention by getting children from the streets who are lost or missing before the streets get to them

It reunites children with their families, but no child is ever returned against their will or back into an abusive situation.

It provides 24 hour care with food and has 14 full time staff including counselors and teachers with a safe night shelter.

It has specially trained female staff and secure area for girls to sleep.

It can place children in good children's homes where they exist in other areas or in homes for adoption by a loving Indian Family.

It provides a bank system for street children to keep their money, and lockers are shortly due to be installed so they can keep their few possessions safe.

It is recognized by the State Government as a shelter home for the care of children in urgent need and distress under the Juvenile Justice Act 2000, but they do not  provide funds to support the centre

And the budget for all this?   $50,000 per year.

That is why every single donation is so important in order to help us keep the centre open.

Included in this report is a picture of a boy from the Punjab , a lost child who was found drugged on a Kolkata bound train , and police brought him here as the train stopped at Gaya. He cannot remember how he got on the train, except two men who he met at the station in the Punjab befriended him and gave him food. He is very poor and lives with his grandfather with whom the picture shows being reunited.

Other news there is a Rescue Junction related video on our website home page, please watch it and ask your friends to look at it. We really need your help. There is a link below in this report.

And finally June 15th is matching funds day at Global Giving Day, please save your kind donations to that day!

With Thanks and Best Wishes to you all,

Sunita

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