An Example of Community Led Initiative
Basbaria Shah Keramotia Registered Primary School is an example of community led initiative. The school is situated at Basbaria village of Basbaria Union under Dashmina Upazila in Patuakhali district. Dashmina is one of the disaster prone areas of Bangladesh because of its location in the coastal belt. The people of this area are combating with the natural disasters in every moments and natural disaster is the part and parcel of their daily lives. Maximum people in this area are under poverty level.
In 1985 some of the elite persons took initiative to spread religious education and built a Maktob. This initiative was taken by Late Abdul Wahed Mirdha and he donated a land to construct the institute. Kari Abdul Howlader took responsibilities to look after the institute as teacher. After few days, Mr. Nazrul Islam and Mr. Jahangir Alam of the same village took decision to change this education system and convert this institute into a primary school for ensuring the basic primary education. Villagers gave this primary school name as the religious saint Hazrat Shah Keramotia and finally this school name was established as “Basbaria Shah Keramotia Primary School”. Primary level education is continuing in this school since 1986. It was registered in 1992 by the Government as registered school. This school is constructed by the Government in 1994 as T-type pucca one storied building.
The school building was damaged by cyclone SIDR and AILA. The roof and plaster of the walls were damaged and floor was washed away. In the rainy season students’ attendance were reduced because rain water entered in the class room from the roof and it was risky as well to continue classes in this school building. But, there was no fund from Government or nay other sources to reconstruct the school building.
After considering all the aspects, SAP-Bangladesh decided to include the school under the most vulnerable category and allocated 100,000 taka for reducing the vulnerabilities and resilient to disasters. The selection was finalized through PVA process and community, SMC, PTA & students were also directly involved in this process. The initiative was to construct 3 rooms CGI sheet shed school beside the existing structure by the budgeted amount of money and earth filling in class rooms and additional timber support given by SMC and community by the assistance of UP Chairman.
The reconstruction of new school rooms was completed and normal schooling is running in the school. We believe this initiative will reduce the vulnerability of the school in next disaster even in monsoon and school has become more resilient to disaster in future.
The community people, teachers, SMC-PTA and students are now happy to get the new class rooms. For this, they expressed their gratitude to SAP-Bangladesh and ActionAid Bangladesh/ UNICEF and PARSES-II project.