Buranovskiye Babushki: A success story from the Russian countryside

Buranovskiye Babushki’s main intention for participating in the Eurovision Song Contest was to raise money to rebuild their church but reality has exceeded their expectations and the peasant families in the village of Buranovo will profit from the grannies’ fame more than imagined.

Buranovskiye Babushki were the runners-up of the 2012 Eurovision Song Contest and their performance earned them immense gratitude from the local government of their hometown Buranovo, a small village in the Russian countryside, where people have initiated development activities thanks to grannies’ support and the local government has devised a sustainable development plan as a viable strategy for its community.

The New York Times published yesterday a special article about how the Russian representatives have managed to improve substantially the quality of life of their neighbors. According to the newspaper, the local government is making structural improvements such as building a water pipeline and most of the neighbors will have running water for the first time meaning they can leave back having to walk down for hours to get water. In addition, this will make it possible to grow vegetables giving the families the possibility of providing for themselves and perhaps even earn some money.

Unprecedented steps have been taken in the village of Buranovo to ensure its long-term sustainability. Street lighting is being installed along the entire village and a thinly paved road is being repaired adding some new gravel. As if this were not enough, new technologies are coming soon to the village and the only school will have high-speed Internet access.

The village’s heritage is also being benefited by the fame of the grandmothers and the Church of the Trinity, taken down years ago, is being rebuilt thanks to the set up of a fund to rebuild it. In fact, the construction of the church began while they were in Baku and when they came back they were surprised to see the foundations of the church for those they had worked so hard.

Aleksandr Malkov, a resident of the village, sums up perfectly in one sentence how things have changed hugely in the town due to the involvement of grandmothers in the contest: "God forgot this place before the grannies sang" he told the newspaper.

Dairying is the most promising sector and most of households scattered throughout the village are involved in milk production. Majority of the dairy farmers are small holders and landless and they constitute bulk of the village’s population. Thus, being an important means of income and employment for these farmers, dairying helps to alleviate poverty assuring a balanced development of the local economy. Employment opportunities for adults and teens and an emerging livestock project will be an important contributing factor in improving their livelihoods and this investment can boost the village’s economy and extricate them from the obscurity of rural penury.

Below you can watch our 3D video of Buranovskiye Babushki performing Party For Everybody at the 2012 Eurovision Song Contest. As always, we strongly recommend watching this video in 3D to enjoy it to its fullest, but if you do not have a pair of suitable glasses this can easily be turned off in the player below to watch in regular 2D.

Source: The New York Times, EuroVisionary
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