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...
Jun 26, 2012

The Monsoon Rains bring Life after the Burning Heat

HIgh Energy Protein Biscuits- Also Tasty!
HIgh Energy Protein Biscuits- Also Tasty!

Hello everyone!

Since our last report the hot season has finally (on June 20th) subsided . It is worth mentioning the temperatures that are reached here .Regularly in the months of May and June temperatures reach 48C, that's 118F in the shade. Of course temperatures like this claim hundreds of lives every year but our Health team set up cooling centres, with plenty of water and ORS sachets, and with health advice and treatment for heat stroke from our trained village health workers casulties from the heat are kept to zero in the project areas.

But the rains have come, but they are fickle and already the heat has started to rise again.

The picture shows a student at our kindergarten enjoying high energy biscuits but with your help we have been able to provide extra glucose drinks to hundreds of children and Oral Rehydration Sachets to replenish body salts.

Some of the villages are very Isolated but we have a 4WD vehicle which means we can reach these villages and continue the food programme, making sure the children get their meals regularly thanks to your support. As Meena says, an eight year old girl living in one of the villages says, " in our home we only have rice and sometimes a little vegetables which we cook on a wood fire. "Dal is too expensive for us and so is cooking oil" I look forward to the food we get from you because it has dal and sometimes eggs and it tastes good"

With Best Wishes and Thanks to you all,

Neelam

Links:

May 8, 2012

Development Conflicts in Flood Affected Bihar

Bihar Village
Bihar Village

Greetings, to all our supporters, from Bihar India The flowing article illustrates the many complex issues around development in the flood affected area.

DISPLACEMENT OF COMMUNITIES FOR NEW BRIDGE

Disregarding massive humanitarian losses like some 50 lively villages already swallowed by the mighty Kosi river’s waters and the displacement of over 75,000 people, a mega road bridge across the river in Bihar was inaugurated amid fanfare and protests on Wednesday, restoring a vital link ruined 78 years ago.
For Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar, who, as the railway minister then, had laid the foundation stone for the Kosi Mahasetu, along with then Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee in June 2003, completion of the 1.8-km bridge in the northern Supaul district was of “unspeakable happiness”. Inaugurating the bridge along with Union road transport and highways minister C.P. Joshi, Mr Kumar asked people in flood-prone northern Bihar to “celebrate and congratulate one another” even as hundreds of displaced villagers and activists waved black flags in protest.
A bridge of bountiful blessings and predictable bane, the project executed by NHAI and Gammon India has baffled river engineers and social activists in Bihar as much as it has blighted the peace of over one hundred thousand people in 64 villages. Completed in four years and nine months, the saving grace of this `418-crore project at Nirmali, part of the East-West Corridor, is that it will restore direct territorial and cultural links between Bihar’s Mithilanchal and Seemanchal regions that had collapsed in 1934, when a devastating earthquake pulled down a railway bridge.
Absence of rehabilitation facilities for a majority of the displaced people and the looming danger to about 380 fertile, three-crop villages, both upstream and downstream, due to the forcible squeezing of the Kosi’s traditionally expansive width into just 1.8 km have propelled a public protest movement for years. With the bridge finally open for use in its disputed shape and size, it public frustration is expected to turn into anger.
“The displaced people approached all authorities concerned, from the state government to the NHAI, the railways, the Ganga Flood Control Commission, but no remedial action on the bridge and measures for rehabilitation were taken,” said Narayan Jee Choudhary of Mithila Gram Vikas Parishad, an NGO at the forefront of the movement. Satyanarayan Prasad, a leader of the displaced villagers, said the affected people were feeling “acutely hopeless and angry, but not defeated”

Source Press Report.

As we continue to work at Grass roots level, as one villager put it, “the assistance and support I received in immediate help with practical things like mosquito nets and blankets and later strengthening and repairing my house and replacement of animals lost made all the difference to my family and I”

However the nature of this appeal is disaster relief and therefore time limited. We shall continue the appeal closely monitoring the situation in the coming monsoon . Unfortunately lives are lost every year but since the terrible floods  strengthened embankments and other major construction have hopefully eased the problem. We feel with our help we have achieved an enormous amount with your help but given our available resources it is likely we shall close the appeal in September. However this will depend on the nature of the rains this year. Please help us reach our target.

Thank you.

Deepak

Links:

Apr 26, 2012

Help us Help GIrls LIke Pramilla

Staff with Children at he Centre
Staff with Children at he Centre

Dear Friends and Supporters,

Firstly thank you for your donations to date for this very important project.

If I may here is just one case history is from when this initiative started.

Obviously we have changed the name and we will not be publishing photographs which identify children in circumstances like this.

Pramilla who is 15 yeas of age arrived recently deeply traumatised. She was in such a state of shock despite the very intense care and support she was given it was three days before she could slowly begin to  describe her terrible ordeal.

She was going for shopping when four boys came from a car and sprayed her face with some substance.  She became unconscious. Her memories are not clear but she was kept chained in a dark room for a period she does not remember. After some time she was unchained, but not allowed to leave the room.  What happened next is not clear but when the door opened to drug her once again she screamed so loud and so long and kicked and punched her kidnappers injuring herself in the process that so alarmed by the noise her kidnappers fled. She collapsed from exhaustion but later in dazed and shocked state found her way out to the streets of Gaya where she wandered before finally a woman took some care and accompanied her to the nearest police station, who immediately referred her to us. Subsequent medical examinations proved she had been repeatedly raped, and had been subjected to other sexual assaults.

I am very sad to say cases like Pramilla are not an isolated occurrence, but this level of abuse and crime is exceptional. Pramilla is responding to care and is already undertaking craft training which is a great therapeutic aid to her recovery, and all efforts are on to locate her family and in time retrace her steps that fateful day and gather evidence which will result in a secure prosecution. A criminal case has of course been lodged.

I want you to know we do not have any other source of funding for the SIGNAL Project specifically so every cent you donate goes towards this important initiative.

Thank you for your help in enabling us to start this work.

With your help we can and will put Pramilla back together again.

Sunita

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