Slowly, brick by brick (mud block by mud block!) the infrastructure for Sarang Rural University is taking shape. It’s a slow process since we are gradually generating the funds ourselves.
Mr Uthaman, a traditional carpenter from Alappauzha visited us and marked out sites for our requirements, a central living and office space, kitchen and dining, cottages for visitors, a workshop cum laboratory, a martial art pit etc. We also dream of a planetarium and a small enclosed auditorium.
Our first work was to reinforce what we already had on the campus. In December ’09 – January ’10 we repaired and modified ‘Theytharam’. It now houses the 9 children along with Gopalakrishnan and Vijayalekshmi. ‘Ezhuthala’, where
they wrote their book was also repaired but is still not insulated against cold and thus not usable in winter or in the rainy season.
The library building stood in disrepair and would have probably fallen in the rainy season, so all the books and other materials where safely put in ‘Theytharam’ and the roofing tiles, timber and mud blocks where taken down. We took a 10 day sabbatical during Onam and started the work on a smaller structure at the same site, using the reclaimed material, reinforcing them with iron and glass for better stability and protection against termites and wind.
We hope that the campus evolves organically with structures being built as and when the need comes.