The extreme weather conditions in the area, with floods due to monsoon rains and drought in the summer months, have been the cause of many disasters. This is even more distressing to locals, because in India the state does not carry the burden of health insurance. This places a heavy financial burden for treatment of injuries and illness caused due to such disasters on the shoulders of the patient, many of whom are underprivileged. BASIS extends help to such ones, taking over either part or the entire cost of treatment.
BASIS helps parents with Start of school expenses like cost of books, notebooks, clothing and umbrellas. It also helps out in professional training programs (nurse education, art teaching, technical training, etc.). BASIS also pitches in with financial contributions for important family ceremonies (such as weddings, funeral) of those who are in need.
Construction, renovation and modernization of residential spaces (kitchen, toilets, drinking water supply etc.) also contributes to improving the quality of life. BASIS helps the underprivileged with these renovations by contributing materials, funding and workers. This commitment contributes to the social development of society.
Since 1993, the drinking water project of BASIS has relieved the chronic water scarcity problem that affected about 150 low-income families in the area. The installation includes a well and an overhead tank with a water distribution system through 15 taps. Such independent, local water supply systems are an important part of rural development work and BASIS supports it to the fullest extent.
We encourage housewives to take the initiative for a better and more secure livelihood by various means, like establishing a small business enterprise (dairy farming, fish and vegetable sales etc). The training program is offered over a period of one year and takes in about 10 women per course, giving women from all ages, religions and paths of life the opportunity to discover and benefit from their talents, abilities and interests.
Some qualified women who receive training under our various training programs, take up holiday program activities like tutoring, English classes, craft and play circles, dance and music for children during the summer school break. BASIS pays for these activities; with the intention being to provide an alternative to the rigid teaching methods in schools and also to encourage children towards holistic development.
In addition to teaching women the craft, the sewing school was also established as a meeting place. Many Indian women and girls, being bound by societal dictates, miss out on interacting with other women outside the family circle. BASIS creates this opportunity for them to meet, learn and share their thoughts and ideas.
BASIS works towards the cause of motivating young people to recognise and nurture their talents. Our art school is part of this initiative. Some highlights of this are the many creative painting and screen printing projects that have been organised. Some pieces from the art school were sold in Germany and to project visitors. The book binding unit is still going well.
In the villages, the development of manual skills is seeing a decline every passing day. With this in mind, the project founders organised a tool collection campaign in Germany, and a workshop was set up in the village that gave villagers the opportunity to learn basic repair work and furniture making. The focus was on DIY (do-it-yourself) projects.
In 1996, BASIS set up a kindergarten. This initiative helped mothers a great deal, as it would give them the time to participate in training programs and pitch in on the seasonal work that comes in. Instead of reproducing knowledge – which is the norm in Indian Kindergartens – this kindergarten focused on promoting and nurturing the creativity of children. This was done by giving impetus to activities such as crafts, painting and singing. In recent years, family planning programs and the exodus of the younger generation to higher paying jobs outside the state, drastically reduced the demographic and eliminated the need for the kindergarten. However for the 16 years that BASIS ran the kindergarten, we had the time of our lives!