First Step towards adopting Harishpur

Inspired by the Gandhian vision of India's future lying in its villages, the NSS Society of Loreto College, Kolkata organized an introductory visit to a remote area of a village named Harishpur located in the vicinity of Naihati Station, North 24 Parganas, West Bengal, on May 22, 2022. Ten volunteers of the NSS Society, who were accompanied by the society Staff Advisors and the Administrative and Academic Officer, received a warm welcome from the villagers and members of Dishita Foundation, a local NGO, who guided them in the entire trip. After a two hour long survey of the village conditions and frequent interactions with the villagers, especially the women and children there , the volunteers took note of abysmal quality of their housing, sanitation and drinking water facilities available in that area. The unhygienic village surroundings and dirty water bodies full of litter and anthropogenic wastes captured the attention of the visitors. A primary school though being located at the centre of the village was claimed to be non-functional with a large number of children of the school-going age present in the area. Agriculture and animal husbandry although being the main source of livelihood in the village, however the native womenfolk were found to be looking for sustainable income opportunities, which has been lacking in this area. The volunteers reflected on this grim outlook of the village which calls for developmental initiatives with regard to education, waste management, hygiene awareness, vocational training, and establishment of basic livelihood provisions.