Barefoot College - Methodology

Methodology

The programs are influenced by the Gandhian philosophy of each village being self-reliant. The policy of the Barefoot College is to take students, primarily women from the poorest of villages and teach them to skills such as install build and repair solar lamps and waterpumps without requiring them to read or write. In extreme cases, there are students without verbal fluency in the languages of their teachers.

The participating villages create a Village Energy and Environment Committee which determines the rates the villagers will pay for the solar panels and identifies which of the poorest residents of the town will go to the college for training. The students receive 6 month training program learning about solar panels and storage batteries before returning home where they maintain and repair the systems.

The college does not give out any degrees or certificates. V. Krishna has described the approach as "de-mystifying high technology" to rural villages to show that with the right training, "the uneducated and semi-literate can operate and manage" items like solar panels and water pumps.

Rajasthan's traditional art of puppetry has been utilized by the college to "spread information on health, education and human rights".

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