India back
Country and people
World Vision's Aparajita Area Development Project (german only)
Country and people back
location: South Asia
area: 3'287'590 km²
capital: New Delhi
The Republic of India is a country in South Asia which comprises the majority of the Indian subcontinent. India has a coastline which stretches over seven thousand kilometres, and shares its borders with Pakistan to the west, the People's Republic of China, Nepal, and Bhutan to the northeast, and Bangladesh and Myanmar on the east. On the Indian Ocean, it is adjacent to the island nations of the Maldives on the southwest, Sri Lanka on the south, and Indonesia on the southeast. India also claims a border with Afghanistan to the northwest.
India is the fourth largest economy in the world in terms of purchasing power parity. It is the second most populous country in the world, with a population of over one billion, and is the seventh largest country by geographical area. It is home to some of the most ancient civilisations, and a centre of important historic trade routes. Four major world religions: Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism have originated from India. Formerly a major part of the British Empire as the British Raj before gaining independence in 1947, during the past twenty years the country has grown significantly, especially in its economic and military spheres, regionally as well as globally.
The name India is derived from the Old Persian version of Sindhu, the historic local appellation for the river Indus; see Origin of India's name. The Constitution of India and general usage also recognises Bharat,which is derived from the Sanskrit name of an ancient Hindu king, whose story is to be found in the Mahabharata, as an official name of equal status. A third name, Hindustan, or Land of the Hindus in Persian, has been used since the twelfth century, though its contemporary use is unevenly applied due to domestic disputes over its representative as a national signifier.
Stone Age rock shelters with paintings at Bhimbetka in Madhya Pradesh are the earliest known traces of human life in India. The first known permanent settlements appeared 9,000 years ago and developed into the Indus Valley Civilisation, which peaked between 2600 BC and 1900 BC. It was followed by the Vedic Civilisation.
From around 550 BC onwards, many independent kingdoms came into being. In the north, the Maurya dynasty, which included the Buddhist king Ashoka, contributed greatly to India's cultural landscape. From 180 BC, a series of invasions from Central Asia followed, with the successive establishment in the northern Indian subcontinent of the Indo-Greek, Indo-Scythian and Indo-Parthian kingdoms, and finally the Kushan Empire. From the 3rd century onwards the Gupta dynasty oversaw the period referred to as ancient India's "Golden Age". The Sanchi stupa in Sanchi, Madhya Pradesh built by emperor Ashoka in the 3rd century BC Enlarge The Sanchi stupa in Sanchi, Madhya Pradesh built by emperor Ashoka in the 3rd century BC.
In the south, several dynasties including the Chalukyas, Cheras, Cholas, Kadambas, Pallavas and Pandyas prevailed during different periods. Science, art, literature, mathematics, astronomy, engineering, religion, and philosophy flourished under the patronage of these kings.
Following the Islamic invasions in the beginning of the second millennium, much of north and central India came to be ruled by the Delhi Sultanate, and later, much of the entire subcontinent by the Mughal dynasty. Nevertheless, several indigenous kingdoms remained or rose to power, especially in the relatively sheltered south.
During the middle of the second millennium, several European countries, including the Portuguese, Dutch, French, and British, who were initially interested in trade with India, took advantage of fractured kingdoms fighting each other to establish colonies in the country. The English managed to thwart the other colonisers and came to rule much of the country by 1840. After a failed insurrection in 1857 against the British East India Company, popularly known in India as the First War of Indian Independence, most of India came under the direct administrative control of the crown of the British Empire. 'The Wheel of Konark'. The Sun Temple at Konark, Orissa built in the 13th century, is one of the most famous monuments of stone sculpture in the world. Enlarge 'The Wheel of Konark'. The Sun Temple at Konark, Orissa built in the 13th century, is one of the most famous monuments of stone sculpture in the world. The Brihadisvara Temple or "Big temple" in Tanjavore, Temple built by the chola emperor Raja Raja Chola in the 10th century AD is one of the best expressions of artistic excellence that could be conceived of. Enlarge The Brihadisvara Temple or "Big temple" in Tanjavore, Temple built by the chola emperor Raja Raja Chola in the 10th century AD is one of the best expressions of artistic excellence that could be conceived of.
In the early part of the 20th century, a prolonged and largely non-violent struggle for independence, the Indian independence movement, followed, to be eventually led by Mahatma Gandhi, regarded officially as the father of modern India. The culmination of this path-breaking struggle was reached on 1947-08-15 when India gained full independence from British rule, later becoming a republic on 1950-01-26.
As a multi-ethnic and multi-religious country, India has had its share of sectarian violence and insurgencies in different parts of the country. Nonetheless, it has held itself together as a secular, liberal democracy barring a brief period from 1975 to 1977 during which the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi declared a "state of emergency" with the suspension of civil rights. India has unresolved border disputes with China, which escalated into a brief war in 1962, and Pakistan which resulted in wars in 1947, 1965, and 1971, and a border altercation in the northern state of Kashmir in 1999. India was a founding member of the Non-Aligned Movement and the United Nations. In 1974, India conducted an underground nuclear test, making it an unofficial member of the "nuclear club", which was followed up with a series of five more tests in 1998. Significant economic reforms beginning in 1991 have transformed India into one of the fastest growing economies in the world and added to its global clout.

India's entire north and northeast states are made up of the Himalayan Range. The rest of northern, central and eastern India consists of the fertile Indo-Gangetic plain. Towards western India, bordering southeast Pakistan, lies the Thar Desert. The southern Indian peninsula is almost entirely composed of the Deccan plateau. The plateau is flanked by two hilly coastal ranges, the Western Ghats and Eastern Ghats.
India is home to several major rivers such as the Ganga (Ganges), the Brahmaputra, the Yamuna, the Godavari, and the Krishna. The rivers are responsible for the fertile plains in northern India which are conducive to farming.
The Indian climate varies from a tropical climate in the south to a more temperate climate in the north. Parts of India which lie in the Himalaya have a tundra climate. India gets most of its rains through the monsoons.

Das Regionalentwicklungsprojekt Aparajita back
Projektbeginn: 2000
Laufzeit: 10 - 15 Jahre

Das Regionalentwicklungsprojekt Aparjita befindet sich im Norden Indiens, im Distrikt Lalitpur, 500km südlich von Delhi.
Arbeitslosigkeit, Analphabetismus (nur 31% der Bevölkerung kann lesen und schreiben) und ein schlechter Gesundheitszustand der Bevölkerung sind die grössten Herausforderungen in dieser Region.
Das Projekt führt Aktivitäten in insgesamt 60 Dörfern durch und erreicht damit ungefähr 40'000 Einwohner. Die hauptsächlichen Angebote sind im Bereich Gesundheit, Bildung, Landwirtschaft und Einkommensförderung.

Gesundheit / Hygiene

Wichtige Informationsträger in Sachen Säuglingspflege, Stillen und Ernährung sind die traditionellen Geburtshelferinnen und Frauen von Selbsthilfegruppen. Das Projekt bildete mehrere Frauen aus, die z.B. Methoden für die Behandlung von Durchfallkrankheiten erlernten. In einem anderen Kurs wurden Schwangere und stillende Mütter über das Stillen und eine gesunde Ernährung informiert. Ein Facharzt führte detaillierte Routineuntersuchungen bei schwangeren Frauen durch.
Mit Wandbildern, Kundgebungen und persönlicher Beratung wurde in der Hälfte der Dörfer auf Themen wie Durchfallerkrankungen, Impfungen, Geburtsurkunden für Neugeborene, HIV/Aids und persönliche Hygiene aufmerksam gemacht. Die Zusammenhänge von verschmutztem Wasser und verschiedenen Krankheiten, von Hygiene und Gesundheit oder die Wirksamkeit der Impfungen sind vielen Bewohnern nur vage bekannt. Das Projekt legt Wert darauf, dass die verantwortlichen Personen im Gesundheitssektor gut ausgebildet werden, um später die Weiterführung der Aktivitäten ohne Unterstützung von World Vision zu garantieren.
Zudem impfte das Team über 1'500 Kinder und untersuchte sie medizinisch. Bei Bedarf wurden die Kinder behandelt.

Schule / Ausbildung

Allein das Vorhandensein von Schulen garantiert noch nicht, dass die Eltern ihre Kinder – vor allem die Mädchen – auch zum Unterricht schicken. Um die Kinder zum regelmässigen Schulbesuch zu motivieren, verteilte World Vision Hunderte von Schuluniformen. Für Schüler, die aus irgendeinem Grund den Anschluss an ihre Schule verpasst haben, bietet das Projekt ergänzenden Unterricht an.
Damit sich der Unterricht auch lohnt, veranstaltete World Vision pädagogische Seminare für die Hilfslehrkräfte an Primarschulen, wobei auch didaktische Fähigkeiten gefördert wurden. Der Erfolg zeichnete sich durch die interessanter gestalteten Lektionen aus; die Kinder nehmen seither regelmässiger am Unterricht teil.
In Alphabetisierungskursen lernen auch die Erwachsenen lesen und schreiben.

Einkommen / Landwirtschaft

Aufgeteilt in acht Gruppen nahmen 150 Bauern an einer Betriebsbesichtigung in einem landwirtschaftlichen Forschungsinstitut teil. Dort lernten sie verschiedene neue Anbaumethoden, die Verwendung von Hybridsaatgut sowie den Gebrauch von Düngemittel kennen. Zur praktischen Umsetzung stellte World Vision den Bauern Düngemittel und Hybridsaatgut zur Verfügung.

Einige Familien im Projektgebiet besitzen kein Land. Die Eltern arbeiten als Tagelöhner auf den Feldern oder in den nahegelegenen Steinbrüchen. Während des Monsuns erhielten sie wegen Wassern in den Steinbrüchen keine Arbeit. Die Familien wurden in dieser Zeit mit Getreide unterstützt. Andere Familien erhielten zudem Ziegen zur Aufzucht und zur Verbesserung ihres Einkommens.
Unterstützung auf einen Blick
Ausbildung für Gesundheitshelferinnen und Frauen von Selbsthilfegruppen in der Betreuung von Schwangeren.
Kampagnen in 30 Dörfern über verschiedene Themen des Gesundheitssektors.
Impfung von 1'500 Kindern sowie medizinische Untersuchung.
Abgabe von ca. 500 Schuluniformen.
Ergänzender Schulunterricht für Kinder, welche den Anschluss an ihre Schule verpasst haben.
Weiterbildung von 35 Hilfskräften an Primarschulen.
Alphabetisierungskurse für Erwachsene.
Betriebsbesichtigung und AUsbildung für 150 Bauern sowie Vergabe von Hybridsaatgut und Düngemittel.
Unterstützung von Familien während des Monsuns mit Getreide.
Organisation eines Sporttags für 400 Kinder, an dem das Sportmaterial zur Verfügung gestellt wurde.
Gründung von sieben Selbsthilfegruppen für Darlehensaufnahmen.

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