Founded in 1972, the Barefoot College is an award-winning, not-for-profit organisation based in Tilonia, Rajasthan, India. It is the only college in India to be built by the poor for the poor and serves a population of over 125,000 people. The College’s goal is to create skilled workers from the community to solve local problems using traditional knowledge and sustainable technology. As the area experiences frequent droughts, the College began with the basics of finding safe drinking water and then in 1986, it looked at the problem of getting solar power to villages.
The College focuses on empowering women who have traditionally been marginalised and restricted to household chores. Through a learning-by-doing process of education, the College encourages practical skills rather than paper qualifications. Women learn how to become ‘barefoot’ solar engineers and how to construct rooftop rainwater tanks in rural community centres. The knowledge and income the women gain improves their standing at home and in the community and provides their local schools with solar power and drinking water.
The British Asian Trust’s funding will provide:
The SOLAR SISTERS-a project of the Barefoot College is one of the 12 Finalists of the BBC World Challenge. They need all the votes they can to win! Please support them on : http://www.theworldchallenge.co.uk/