Deep Foundation from Sujata

Saturday, January 01, 2011

DEEP Foundation - Current Projects (as on 22/12/2010)

Setting up an informal school environment for the children of nomadic shepherds(Bakkarwals) in Jammu & Kashmir :

Because of their nomadic lifestyles, these children are not accepted in mainline schools. Our goal is to provide tented 'mobile' schools (offering primary school level education) that can travel with them from one camp to another, along with a teacher from their own community.

The first pilot project has been initiated for the Bakkarwal(nomadic shepherd) community that we are working with. They travel to the Alpine pastures at Tarsar Lake in the summer months, via the beautiful valley at Liddervat. In the month of October each year, they migrate back to their base camp at village Pingagala in Treyaat, district Rajouri in Kashmir. The teacher being trained, supported and empowered is the self motivated shepherd, Mohammed Bashir.

We are grateful to A Ray of Hope and David Tyler Trust for supporting us in this initiative. ,

Project NEEV

NEEV - DEEP Foundation's education initiative for the underpriviliged children, is not about conventional education. Some of our students may be attending conventional Government run schools. NEEV is like a second school where the children come in for 2 hours in the evening to learn life skills and get support on their functional literacy skills, while also having a lot of fun. We at DEEP aspire to make these two hours the ones that they look forward to the most, every single day.
The first class of NEEV was attended by 35 children of age groups ranging from 5 years to 15 years. The first 'school' is located in Vasant Kunj, New Delhi.

Supporting a playschool, Masoom, in Srinagar, Kashmir, catering to the children of small time artisans, masons, carpenters and other workers :

These children are between 2-7 years of age. We are supporting, equipping and empowering the teacher with teaching aids and innovative training techniques. The focus is on providing a value based education that offers a lot of joy to the tender minds.

Educating the men and women in Budgam district of J&K on sheep and goat rearing:

Keeping their orthodox lifestyles and cultures in mind, we are offering them, especially their ladies, a viable, home based employment opportunity.

Integrated Development of Small Ruminants

Working with NABARD and The Ministry of Agriculture(Dept. of Animal Husbandry, Government of India), in promoting sheep and goat rearing/breeding as a viable business opportunity amongst the weaker sections of society in Jammu & Kashmir. Development of small ruminants in an integrated manner holds great potential for generating employment and enhancing rural prosperity. Our goal is to later duplicate the model across other states in India.

The project entails capacity building and training of farmers, forming Self Help Groups(Micro Financing) and act as guardians for the new rearers/growers.

DEEP Foundation has been assigned District Rajouri of Jammu & Kashmir State. We are also a member of the State Level Sanctioning and Monitoring Comittee.

In the first phase of implementation of the project, we have identified and trained 60 beneficiaries from 7 blocks, in two training programmes. We have reached out to about 55 villages from far flung areas so far.Other Initiatives

• Fund raising initiatives for supporting our ongoing projects, promoting craftsmen and weavers.

• Providing new opportunities and a fun filled platform to children with special abilities that aim at teaching them how to negotiate outdoor space, meet new people and experience different spaces. We are working with self-help parent groups.

Future Projects

• Setting up a mobile dispensary that would provide medical assistance to the nomadic shepherd community in far flung areas.

• Training the shepherds about first aid - both for themselves as well as for their flock.

• Assisting the community with veteranery expertise from time to time.

• Reviving forgotten handicraft skills typical to the bakkarwal tribes, thereby involving the women of the community and empowering them to generate income.