By: Capt. Indraani Singh Managing Trustee and Sohit Yadav Project Manager
Project Location: West Bengal India
Khatanga village is located in Purulia Jhalda II block border of West Bengal & Jharkhand. It is 50 km away from the main town. Literacy India started a learning centre entitled as UTHNOU in the village Khatanga. Village is dominated by Santhal tribes. Both women and men are engaged in the agriculture; Agriculture is a mono-cropping- so the community have a seasonal unemployment issues. Lack of access afford & opportunities for Livelihood options, illiteracy and drop trend among children especially the girl children, lethargy toward work among youth makes Khatanga more and more feeble. It is in that context project Nandini come into operation which is to empower a Girl Child and Women.
A workshop and training was undertaken for Women & Adolescent Girls on Embroidery, stitching and computer Literacy.
Workshop on Embroidery:
Kantha is a style of embroidery from Bengal. Originally started by women of Bengal who would instead throwing old cotton Saris use them to make quilts. Running stitch was used to hold several layers of fabric together for quilts and blankets.The running stitch is evolved a Kantha style. Being available in the ecosystem it was easy to introduce and make the beneficiaries learn and adapt easily
Following was achieved in the workshop
• Assessment and Mapping of present skill of the women on Kantha and also other motifs.
• Preparation done for fabrics to use as samples by cutting them and printing of the designs with the help of blue powder and kerosene.
•Training on the procedure of printing designs on fabric which had certain steps. i.e. after making the design on paper, tracing and the outline of designs required needling, followed by printing on fabric with the help of kerosene and blue powder.
• Women learnt to develop design for bed sheet, cushion covers, and pillow covers.
Achievements & Impacts:
• Women are able to create prototype Motifs. Motifs are inspired from peacocks, elephants, fish, lotus, creepers, leaves, flowers and temples. Lotus was used as a central form.These Motifs are traditionally popular in the community.
• Women can calculate the density and direction of running stitch which creates a unique rippled effect in totality.
• This embroidery is done by women and helps them with additional income.
• Now, cotton thread is used for the embroidery and its usually done on a cotton fabric or silk (tussar silk).
• It has gained an international market for its unique and detailed work.
- Women are able to make many Geometrical shapes & lines, Alpana,Peacock,Flow,Floral,Shell ( Shankh)
- Children attended ICT based learning and computer basics such as type master, paint-brush and file creation, saving, parts of computer and so on. Another serious component of Technology based learning is Gyantantra digital dost -( Multimedia Package of Literacy India)- Preparing children who are out of school-drop-outs, working as domestic help or are child labour and those who did not get any opportunities for education and staying in difficult circumstances for mainstreaming in academic courses.The goal of the Gyantantra – Software is to build a scalable learning solution using technology which will complement classroom based learning in short span of time.Many Children who have gone through this course are doing very well in their respective classes after being Mainstreamed. They not only learnt how to reach and write but they also learnt about Voting rights , Saving , Sexual abuse and on Hygiene through famous “RIMA DIDI s( Animation Character) Story telling & then asking questions later.
Additional leverage besides Academic through this innovation
- Fundamental rights
- Financial Literacy and awareness
- Health and hygiene awareness
Stories of Change among the Girls
Mamta kumari (Name changed) belongs to a very poor family. They are residing in a forest fringe village of West Bengal. Her father is a farmer and her mother is a farm labour. Family income: Rs. 1000/month. She has 4 members in her family.
It was very hard for her parents to continue her study. At present she is studying Gyantantra at Literacy India Learning centre. She is a student of Government Primary school. She learns Language (Bengali,English), Math, Science, Geography and History. She is a average student. Through Gyantantra she could spell English words correctly. She is able to do mathematics and calculate. She can use computer also. This year she is preparing herself to admit in the better school.
Sonal (Name changed) , belongs to tribal family. Her parents are working in agricultural land. She is admitted in the Govt. Primary School. However, she was struggling being generation learner. She is now studying Gyantantra. She learns Language (Bengali,English), Math, Science, Geography and History. She is a moderate student. At present, she is improving a lot in her study. She can spell English words properly. She is able to calculate. She is becoming computer savvy also. She is preparing herself for getting admission in a better school. She loves to play badminton.
Krishna’s kumari (Name changed) father is a farmer. They have 7 members in family. She is a student of class IV in the primary School. She has a keen interest in sports therefore her studies were lagging behind – the technology intervention as a co curricular activity at the center , she has picked up a great deal in her studies.
Priya (Name changed) belongs to a very poor family in Village of West Bengal. Her father is the only earning member in the family of six members with a meager income of Rs1000/- per month. She is a student in govt. primary school. After being exposed to computer literacy and at Literacy India `s software her calculation skills have gone up. She has shown lot of progress in Mathematics and English.