BUILD India wrote -
Building Understanding through International Learning and Development (BUILD) is a student-led initiative of the Institute for Global Leadership at Tufts University. BUILD partners with rural communities in the developing world to research and implement initiatives for human, social, and economic development.
Our group of 30 Tufts students is currently collaborating with Thottiapatti, a village in Tamil Nadu, India, that lacks access to basic resources and job security. We are working in conjunction with locally based partner NGO Payir, which focuses on holistic development and provides employment to many villagers in the surrounding area. Our project has 3 main components:
1) Public bathroom facilities - These environmentally-friendly and low water usage toilets will ensure that villagers no longer need to walk a mile to go to the bathroom, day or night, in order to keep decency.
2) A green computer center and communal space - Thottiapatti's need for a shared, unifying space will be met by building a solar-powered community center which will house a library and an innovative e-learning computer program so that the villagers will gain practical vocational skills and have opportunities to connect with students and teachers all over the world.
3) Artisan business - This project will utilize the existing artistic skills of the young men and women of Thottiapatti to design their own products using their original Kolam designs. Please see our pictures for examples of this traditional artform!
Together, with your support, our project will bridge gaps in the community - between elders and youth, different caste groups, and men and women - creating an environment of mutual understanding and acceptance. Thank you all!