The Barefoot College is a popular "university" that teaches low-skilled women from rural areas to become solar engineers. In six months, women from different developing countries, who dont' even speak the same language and for most cannot read, learn how to build and repair solar panels, but also electrical networks, etc.
What moved us the most with this initiative is its way of teaching. Indeed, the Barefoot College is known for démystifying a knowledge usually reserved to an elite. In Belgium, not anyone can become an engineer. At the Barefoot College, an illiterate woman can, and in only 6 months. This is why we will focus on this horizontal education system and on the empowerment that results from it.
To reflect this way of learning, we want to tell you their adventures and stories through portraits. Those portraits will be made of testimonies from the women studying there. In September, we'll travel there to meet them. Since their classes also start in September, we'll arrive at the same time and then get their fresh motivations and hopes in the training for their futures. After that, we'll travel to villages near Tilonia which have benefited from the program, to see the impact of such an experience on rural communities. We will also take news from other previous students, including in Jordan.
All those stories will be shared in a web-documentary combining videos, photographes, texts … We are planning on developing an educational and didactive tool that would use the Barefoot College exemple to bring awareness to the citizens and offer them another vision on the subject of the solar energy, to understand how other people live.
Empreintes and Les Amis De La Terre are our partners in Belgium and have as mission the environmental awareness and the popular education. Our approach takes part in the awareness campaign « With the South you dont lose the North » launched by Les Amis de la Terre.
ARES (Académie de Recherche et d’Enseignement Supérieur) supports us financially for the expenses related to the diffusion of the final project in Belgium.
We also won, in April, the 1st Canon prize ! Thanks to their help, we'll leave for India with the best equipment (photo and vidéo) possible. That will allow us to bring back a greater quality work.