Village Rebuilding Program (VRBP) has been the backbone of VRO’s work in rural India. Since the inception, VRO supported more than 435 village communities (around 22,000 families) in constructing houses and community centers. The objective of the program was not just to provide a house but build a home and community as well, covering the aspect of livelihood training of adult and youth in the village.
The following principles will be followed in this social housing programme:
- People’s participation is a sine qua non for any realistic and successful developmental programme; what is important is whether the people participate in our programme or we participate in the people’s programme. It is realized over the decades of past experience that we should participate in the programme of the people and not vice versa. What maximum can be done by the community as a whole for their development should be mobilized before we extend our participation in their programme. It may vary from family to family and community to community but invariably a principle is made to enable the family to extract its maximum output for the construction of their own house before seeking external support.
- Participation principle has to create a feeling of ownership among the target families and as such these families should feel that they have constructed their village with the support of the external organization and not vice versa. House gives poor family greater pride and dignity: the family is recognized in the society. The attitudes of the family members get changed and the outlook is entirely different. These families have been living in great distress and despair for several ages and have developed negative attitudes and they lost their hopes on the future. Hence, the permanent house gives these families greater security and enables them to develop a positive attitude and creates hope for a bright future for the next generations.