Kamla Bhasin was born in 1946 and grew up in Rajasthan, India. She received a BA at Maharani's College in Jaipur and an MA in Economics at Rajasthan University. In addition, she studied Sociology of Development for four semesters at Muenster University in West Germany.
From April 1970 to March 1971 Bhasin was a Lecturer in the Orientation Centre of the German Foundation for Developing Countries in Bad Honnef, West Germany. Then from 1972-1975 she was the Development Secretary of Seva Mandir in Udaipur, India. Seva Mandir is a non-government organization working with the poorer segments of the population in Rajasthan, India. While with Seva Mandir, Bhasin worked directly with the rural poor (men & women) to organize agricultural, economic and educational activities for their upliftment. The main emphasis was on mobilising people for their own development. They started developing strategies for participatory development, popular education, women's empowerment, etc. In addition, they developed close contacts with other NGOs in India and became part of the NGO movement. During these four years Bhasin wrote extensively for newspapers on the rural realities and the impact of development programmes and policies on the rural poor.
From Oct.1975 to August 1979, Bhasin was the FFHC/AD Programme Officer in FAO-RAPA Bangkok, in charge of a Regional Project, "Role and Training of Change Agents," which supported NGO initiatives. Her main work during these four years was to:
Since April 1979 Bhasin has been posted in FAO, New Delhi, to carry out an FAO-NGO South Asian Programme which works with and supports to NGOs, people's organisations, women's groups and poverty-oriented government programmes. The focus of this Programme now is on sustainable agriculture and women's empowerment. Her duties have been the following:
Bhasin's work has involved close collaboration with U.N., government, and bilateral agencies, media, researchers, academics and others. As part of this work she has travelled extensively in Asia, specially in the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Bangladesh, Bhutan India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. She have been able to see the work of and establish personal contacts with a large number of organisations involved in development action and reflection at different levels.
Participation in other organizations:
Many of these books have been translated into Spanish and French by FAO and into various Asian languages by national organizations.
Borders and Boundaries Women in India's Partition. Co-authored with Ritu Menon. Kali for Women, 1998.
Ladki Kya Hai, Ladka Kya Hai. Jagori, 1998.
What is Patriarchy? Kali for Women, 1993.
Towards Conceptual Clarity - Report of a South Asian Workshop on Women and Development. FFHC/AD, FAO, 1991.
Hamaari Betiyan Insaaf Ki Talaash Mein. Jagori,1987. 1991 (A book on the position of girls in India).
Grappling with Each Other Action and Theory - Report of a South Asian Workshop. Co-authored with Nighat Said Khan. FFHC/AD, FAO, 1987.
Feminism in South Asia. Co-authored with Nighat Said Khan. Kali for Women, 1986.
Dhammak Dham - Rhymes for children in Hindi, Urdu, English, Gujarati and Punjabi. UNICEF, New Delhi.
Ulti Sulti Mito - a book for children. Published by Kali for Women.
Are We on the Right Track? Report of an FFHC/AD Workshop on participatory evaluation. FFHC/AD, FAO, 1986.
Sharing One Earth. Co-authored with Nighat Said Khan. FFHC/AD, FAO, 1986
Formulating Projects with People Report of a Training Programme. FFHC/AD, FAO.
Towards Empowerment. FFHC/AD, FAO, 1984.
Hamaara Shivir Hamaari Baat. Co-authored with Abha Bhaiya and Gauri Chowdhry. FFHC/AD, FAO, 1983.
Training Tribal Activists. Co-authored with Datta Savale. FAO, 1983.
Role and Training of Development Activists. Co-authored with Vasant Palshikar and Laxmi Rao. FFHC/AD, FAO, 1980.
Breaking Barriers A South Asian Experience of Training for Participatory Development. FFHC/AD, FAO, 1978.
Participatory Training for Development. FFHC/AD, FAO, 1976.
Against All Odds Essays on Women, Religion and Development in India and Pakistan. Co-edited Ritu Menon, Nighat Said Khan. ISIS and Kali for Women, 1994.
Our Indivisible Environment. Report of a South Asian Workshop on Environment. FFHC/AD, FAO, 1991.
Pressing Against Boundaries. Report of a South Asian Workshop on women's issues. 1990, FFHC/AD, FAO.
Women Development and Media. Co-edited with Bina Agarwal. PAWF /ISIS/Kali for Women, 1985.
Mahila Vikaas Ke Aayaam and Vikaas ke Aayaam - two books of readings in Hindi. Co-edited with Abha Bhaiya. FFHC/AD, FAO, 1984.
Readings on Poverty, Politics and Development. FFHC/AD, FAO, 1980.
The Position of Women in India. 1974.
Bhasin has written a large number of articles on issues related to development, participatory training, media and communication, gender etc., in both Hindi and English for newspapers, development journals and books.
Bhasin has also been writing songs for women and children. Seven audio cassettes of these songs have been produced by NGOs in India and Pakistan and they are used extensively by women's groups, other social movements, schools etc. Many of her lyrics have been used in films on and for women, girls, child labour, mentally challenged people, ecology etc.
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