A super cyclone has just hit Kolkata and the surrounding areas in West Bengal, where Jana Sanskriti Centre for Theatre of the Oppressed is based, and has been for over 30 years. Many of us have trained with Jana Sanskriti, attended the incredible Muktadhara festival, been inspired and activated by their work, and learned from Sima, Sanjoy, and the team all over the world. Now it is time for the international TO community to support Jana Sanskriti so that they can rebuild their centre in Badu, and help sustain the communities they work alongside, with urgently-needed shelter, food, water and medicine. This cyclone came at a moment when their work was already disrupted by Covid-19, so funds are needed more than ever. See more from Sanjoy below!
**Please give whatever you can, and share widely. Funds will be transferred to Jana Sanskriti quickly and often, so that they can address the damage immediately. **
Message from Sanjoy Ganguly of Jana Sanskriti:
The cyclone has destroyed houses trees, crops. Villagers need shelter (temporary and then permanent), food, some people need to repair their houses, many do not know what to do with the destruction of their firm house. Vegetables and bittleleafs are the two main cash crop here.
Now with the paddy, the cash crops are destroyed, the villagers are in bad shape. Also, water is still trapped in the villages which will contaminate drinking water sources causing diarrhoea. There is a need for bleaching powder, calcium carbonate to purify roads and water.
Our cultural centre, called Muktamanchin Digambarpore, is destroyed. We established it in the year 1997. Many TO practitioners and academics from all across the globe went to Digambapore at our centre, spent lovely times there. The roof of our building adjacent to the Muktamanch flown away. Our actors next day morning tried to save our harvested crops. Satya, Chitta, Renuka, Kabita, Pradip, Dipak who travelled abroad many times have lost their houses. Many villagers have witnessed their house falling from the shelter. Our Digambarpore centre had also acted as a shelter.
We have lost trees at our main centre in Badu near Kolkata. The roof over the staircases has flown away. We have no electricity now, no internet. Boal auditorium needs attention too.
Now we need to reconstruct and repair the houses, we need to provide food, grains and medicines at least in the next three months to the families in our villages."
Photo of the damage:
Photo of Jana Sanskriti's work from before the cyclone:
What will happen with the funds?
Funds will be transferred directly to Jana Sanskriti's bank account in Kolkata each week until the campaign has ended, via TransferWise!
Jana Sanskriti will use the funds to 1) rebuild their own physical artistic and administrative space after the cyclone; 2) provide food, water, and medicine to their community of thousands of people across West Bengal who have been affected by the cyclone.
Jana Sanskriti has been providing shelter and other emergency services to their community members, and these funds will go directly to those costs as soon as they are received.
Thank you for your support!