Showing posts from September, 2017
Towards Disaster Preparedness Goal: Schools can play a major role!
Dhruv Bheda Class 9, Kunskapsskolan, Gurgaon
When I was small, I happened to go with my parents to different events and workshops related to disaster management. Due to this, I was aware of the disasters that could occur in my surrounding. When I was 5, we went for a beach holiday. As I knew about tsunamis due to the Indian Ocean Tsunami just a few years before then, I was not ready to go into the sea. Whenever the water moved backwards before the waves formed, I thought a tsunami was coming and ran away. Even though I knew about disasters, I was not aware of their intensity and seriousness. Whenever an earthquake occurred, I quickly ran under the table and followed `Duck, cover and hold’ that I had learnt from some story books and videos. My mother used to say, “ducks under the tables” and I used to take cover.
When I was a little older, I started to try and help people who were affected by disasters by donating from my p…
Addressing perceptions of Risk & School Safety
- Vijayalakshmi Viswanathan, SEEDS

The gong is ringing. It takes you back to break time, to your favourite class, to a teacher, to the smell of chalk (or markers), to your school. For a school is more than a building. Its importance as a child’s foundation, as an institution that holds weight and as a refuge in emergencies is unparalleled. Along with hospitals and key public administration buildings, they are seen as ‘lifeline’ structures in a community. 
So it seems a given that schools should be ‘safe’, but safe how and from what? Actual perceptions of risk and safety differ widely based on experience.
From a disaster standpoint, far too many children are still at risk with school infrastructure sustaining disproportionately high damage during disasters. Over the years, tens of thousands of children have either perished or been badly affected simply because their schools were not safe. The Nepal Earthquake of 2015, for example, signif…
Collective hope bears fruits in arid Rajasthan
– Kirit Parmar Programme Coordinator, Unnati
Ghewar Ram and Gauri Devi, who live in the hostile desert of western Rajasthan, own just a one and a half bigha plot of land. They used to migrate in search of livelihood every time a drought struck. Not any more. With the help of Unnati, a Non Governmental Organisation, they have adopted horti-pasture techniques.
 The family first planted local species such as ber, goonda, karonda and lemon, created a rain water harvesting tank and a boundary for the farm to prevent stray animals from destroying the crop. Next year, Gauri Devi introduced guvar on her farm as a part of inter cropping. By the end of the second year, the farm turned profitable. While her family has to put about two extra hours of work on the farm, inter-cropping has benefited them immensely in terms of fodder, fruits, vegetables and other produce. The family has been able Collective hope bears fruits in arid Rajasthan to earn Rs. 20…