Blog / Negotiating Roots

NR 19| Gram Eco-Sani-Irri – Visiting Bhansali Vidya Mandir

18June 2014

Bhansali Vidya Mandir is a public school approximately 2 km from Paradsinga village. After breakfast at Gram the team of the artist left for the school. Since the artists here at Gram have been developing sustainable models for ecology sanitation and irrigation we thought that school could be a very good platform to spread the movement to each student’s house. Though the idea was to work with the students but since it was vacation for the students we decided to talk to the teachers who could take the idea further and discuss it in the classrooms.

Shweta introduced Gram projects to the school audience. It was a well- received by all of them. After Shweta’s talk we were invited to begin the presentation. Following Stanis Lowsky method, improvise and perform, a multi- media presentation was organized by Shakti Bhai and other artists for the staff members of Vidya Mandir all staff members including the principal of the school

We discussed on the subject of Eco Sani Irri and how Bhansali Vidya Mandir could contribute to the same. The project on Eco Sani Irri shares its concerns with ‘clean school green school’ projects which can be run at school levels. Since one of the subjects taught at school is Environmental Science these issues and concerns are already a part of their syllabus. During the presentation we highlighted options which would be in common interest to school and Gram.

Excerpts from the presentation:

In 1949 it was decided by the government of India that there should be water supply, urinal and toilets in the school premises.

One urinal for every sixty children. One toilet for every 100 children.

As per the findings of the All India Educational survey only 30 percent of the village school have water supply facility in their own premises whereas only seven percent of the schools have urinal and toilet facility : means that much remains to be done in this direction

Children should form the habit of using toilets instead of defecating in the open.

In the school curriculum it is already incorporated as to how the fecal is to be disposedoff properly and the risk involved in the absence of such facilities.

The education regarding the use of latrine imparted to the children by the teachers in the school will also reach to the guardians, which otherwise will not be possible for them in absence of school education

UNICEF’s Survey says that the 60-70 percent of girl students studying in class v-vii of primary school drop- out. The main reason for this is the lack of toilets and urinal facility in the school.

According to a study conducted the cognitive and physical growth in children who defecate in open is much less than children who use toilets.