Development Cooperation Handbook/The video resources linked to this handbook/The Documentary Story/Does Charity empower?
The KFI story
The second project was the story about the Krishnamurti Foundation. This was Gauri’s responsibility. It was her very first story she was directing. I was giving her some suggestions and cues from far away, but she had to make most of the strategic choices by herself. I told her to interview different stakeholders: the managers, the workers, beneficiaries, local politicians. It turned out that there was a strong disagreement amongst actors, especially between the managers of the charitable school and hospital and the village people who these charitable institutions were serving.
I asked Gauri to follow up this issue. Why was there a disagreement? It turned out that the villagers were actually more interested in occupying the vast portion of agricultural land that was under the control of the Krishnamurti Foundation. I thought that the dynamics was very interesting. And asked Gauri to go deeper in it.
How is it that a “charitable approach” does not generate consent on the counterparts? Gauri went on interviewing people and finally made an interesting 10 minutes story that she titled “Does Charity empower?” to which clearly she had answered a bIg “No! It doesn't!”. But then turn the question the other side and say "what is that brings about empowerment?”. That was quite too much for Gauri. Vrinda help was needed. And in fact she stepped in.
She tried to visualize all the problems and its determinants. And what solutions could be proposed. She hold discussions with all stakeholders. She was doing for the sake of making the documentary; but she did so well that the Foundation managers actually asked her to be an adviser to the foundation and help them to design a new program approach.
She accepted it. Krishnamurti foundation campus is really too nice. And the people who work there are really too refined and authentic. And the problem to be faced was really too interesting. She could not say no to such an interesting adventure.
And that turned to be a real boon for the handbook attached to the documentary. In fact a big section of it was on how to design, managing and evaluate programs and projects. We had prepared the instructional pages and developed a number of tools attached to them to make it more practical. But we had no videos for that portion. Because we had always filmed project a specific moment of their life circle. Here we finally had the possibility of filming all the steps of programme designing, step to step, as they occur. Because Vrinda was going to do it, Gauri could follow her in doing it.
See in the handbook
First cut by Gauri ⇒ Does Charity Empower ?
Playlist of all interviews ⇒ Krishnamurti Foundation - Rural School and Hospital
On Wikimedia Commons ⇒ Learning to share learning - edited version