Thursday, 19 July 2018

Deepika, Pebble Garden, Auroville - Seed Saver

Deepika and many other seed savers will be there at Bharat Nivas on 28th July 2018 for the SLI 2nd Seed Festival. Do join us for the same. Come and celebrate our Seeds Diversity. 

Saturday, 14 July 2018

On Impacts and Inspirations: The Story of Mr. Kalaimani

"Impact" is an engineering term of specific response, that is predictable and recreated under conditioned spaces. It is often inadequately and without much thought applied in social actions and projects to measure how humans have been affected. People don't live in conditioned environment, it is impossible to predict human action unless you are excessively intrusive (as some of the technology gadgets and their producers increasingly want to do) and thereby create political and rights issues for oneself and responses are not often measurable in concrete immediate terms. I prefer the term "influence" or in cases "inspire" rather than impact to measure human exchanges and responses.

At SLI, we provide training programme sponsored by the government.  "What is the impact of your programme?" we get often asked by some people. We are sometimes at a loss to explain the details to them - that we are bound by the efficiency of the government official who is supposed to choose the right kind of candidates for the training programme, that the officials should have been given adequate and timely information by other officials for him to do a good job of it, that he / she should have already well established knowledge of the region and / or community to know whether this programme is relevant to them or not (in government often officials are transferred before they can get to know a place better), and, after all this candidate selection, we are left with the interest levels, priority, need, changing pressure situations and level of knowledge of the candidate. And all of these before they arrive to our Institute for the training programme. There are several more steps dependent on many more people after the candidate leaves the programme that are unpredictable. If this is the case of the rural community, when it comes to officials who attend our programmes,it gets even more so.

So, 'Impact' of any programme is well nigh impossible as there is no prediction of any of these parameters. That's why I prefer to use the terms that we 'influence' or 'inspire' actions among people that are driven by their own needs and priorities and personal orientations. It is also more humbling to acknowledge that people are already in a path and our intervention can only be partly responsible for their actions if at all. 

It is with this understanding that I want to present the  work of Mr. Kalaimani of Thiruvarur. Kalai, as he is referred to had attended our Stewardship programme about a couple of years ago. He was an Assistant Project Manager in the Pudhu Vazhvu Project at that time. This world bank funded poverty alleviation project aimed to supplement the government efforts through localized micro finance and supplementary income generation programmes. In his first visit itself he made a significant impression on everyone as he spoke about having a passion for planting trees and was greatly inspired by the afforestation efforts and diversity he saw in Auroville whenever he visited one of the forests or farms.

Subsequently, we found that, there was a surge of rightly chosen candidates coming from his district for several training programmes as he realized the value of what we provide from our institution (this actually is a generic trend, whenever the officials and the community are aligned to local needs the changes of creating successful local initiatives are rather high). We also found that he himself had increased his tree planting activities and propagating local flora within the local community. He is one of the few officials that made it to the level 3 in the Stewardship programme, learning designing sustainable livelihood tools and methods as well. With each visit, we also noticed that his own convictions and actions to promote local flora and spread the tree planting drive in his region growing.

The  Pudhu Vazhvu Project ended in 2017 June and almost all employees were hopeful of being absorbed into the new project funded by the World Bank, the Rural Transformation Project that was launched subsequently by the government. But not Kalai. He wanted to launch his own organization and make his ambition of spreading the message to children in particular through the organization. Vanam, his organization was born through these efforts. 

A government job is a middle class Indian dream, it means secure salary, perhaps a good pension after several years, and, access to power, which is any day important to get any work done. So, it is not every day that someone decides to quit a government job and start something that he is passionate about and risks his livelihood and security for the same. Kalai stands as an unique example on that front. 

Today SLI often invites Kalai as a faculty to share his inspiring story. He is part of the core team that is involved in evolving an Orientation programme for the same Rural Transformation Project that some of his erstwhile colleagues aspire to be part of. 

Kalai has often mentioned how visiting Auroville was inspiring for him the first time, today, his work is an inspiration for us and many more. It is such stories that are sustainable and sustained in the long run rather than short lived 'impact' stories. 

I will be participating in his next event in Kumbakonam on 17th of July 2018. Here is wishing him strength and support in all his endeavors.

Ramasubramanian, Director, SLI
14th July 2018

Wednesday, 27 June 2018

Exposure visit to SLI from Mahalir Thittam, Erode

A team from Mahalir Thittam, Erode consists of Mr A. Srinivasan, Project Director, Mahalir Thittam, APOs, staffs and Cluster Facilitators visited SLI as a part their exposure visits.

The team interacted with members of Amirtha and Meera Herbal products Enterprises and visited Auroville Village Action Group and understand the enterprise's activities of women's' group.

Project Director would like to develop many activities with the coordination of SLI for CLGs of Erode District.

Monday, 25 June 2018

Annual Seed Festival is coming up!

One of the big highlights 2017 has been on 26th of July when SLI organized its first Seed Festival. On this occasion, there were more than 20 seed savers from across Tamil Nadu and around 300 varieties of traditional seeds. Students from many different schools in and around Auroville learned about the local flora and diversity in various presentations while seed exchange happened all day. The festival further included talks, exhibition of seeds and knowledge exchange sessions. 
This year, SLI is aiming to repeat the huge success of the Seed Festival on Saturday, the 28th of July.
We look forward to welcome you!

Seed Festival on the 28th of July

Friday, 11 May 2018

Wellness Consultant – Advanced (07 - 14 May 2018)

                                                                                                                                    07 – 11 May 2018 

ஆரோக்கியத்தோடு கூடிய வளரிளம் பெண்கள் மற்றும் பெண்கள் உடல் நலம் மற்றும் ஊட்டச்சத்து தேவைகள் பற்றிய மென்மை நிறைந்த விளக்கங்களோடு தொடங்கிய இப்பயிற்சியில், 

மூலிகை வழி அழகு நிலையம் - தொழில் திட்டமிடல் – Group Exercise,

மூலிகை சார்ந்த அழகு கலை பயிற்சி – அழகு பராமரிப்பு,

யோகா & AVIVA,

அழகு நிலையம் பார்வையிடல் என நீண்ட இப்பயிற்சியில் சிறப்பு மிக்க அழகுக்கலை யுத்திகளையும், தொழில் நுணுக்கம் அடங்கிய, இயற்கைசார் அழகு கலை நிறைந்த மணப்பெண் அலங்காரம், பூமாலை தொடுத்தல், சிகை அலங்காரம், ஆடை அலங்காரம் உள்ளிட்ட பல... தொகுப்புகளாய் கொண்டுசெல்லப்பட்டது..

அதோடுகூடவே, நம் உடலை பேணிகாக்கும் வகையில், Season based Health and Beauty care management என்ற சிறப்பு வகுப்பும், பங்கேற்பாளர்கள் கற்றுதெளிந்த நிலை அறிய Practical தேர்வும், பங்கேற்பாளர்களை ஊக்குவிக்க சான்றிதழ் அடங்கிய எழுத்து தேர்வும் இப்பயிற்சியில் மெருகேற்றப்பட்டது.

பயிற்சியின் நிறைவாக Feedback and Certificate distribution வழங்குதலோடு... சிறப்புற அமைத்தது அழகு கலை பயிற்சி.

பயிற்றுநர்கள்: Dr. தமிழ்செல்வி, திரு. பார்த்தசாரதி, Ms. முத்துகுமாரி, Dr.லோகநாதன், Ms. கவிதா (அழகு கலை நிபுணர்), Dr. Bee, Ayurvedic Practitioner & Ms.பவித்ரா

Friday, 4 May 2018

PRINCIPLES OF SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE – Focus on Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) (02 to 04/05/2018)


– Focus on Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) 

(02 to 04/05/2018) 

பங்கேற்பாளர்களுக்கு புத்துணர்ச்சி அளிக்கும் Mindfulness செயல்களோடு துவங்கிய... இப்பயிற்சியில் இயற்கை விவசாயத்தில் - இன்றைய நிலை மற்றும் வாய்ப்புகள் பற்றிய விரிவான அலசலோடும் 

          சமூக குழு சார்ந்த வேளாண்மை 

          பண்ணை வடிவமைப்பு முறைகள் 

   இயற்கை வழி வேளாண்மை இடுபொருள் மற்றும் பூச்சி விரட்டிகள் தயாரிப்பு 

என தற்சார்பு விவசாயத்தை ஒவ்வொருவருக்கும் ஆழ்ந்த புரிதல் கொண்ட பயிற்சிகளும் அதோடுகூடவே.. 

குழு சார்ந்த வேளாண்மை குறித்து நேரடி களப்பயிற்சியினை (ஆரோ ஆர்ச்சர்ட் & Solitude Farm)– பண்ணை பார்வையிடல் வாயிலாக பயிற்றுவித்து... 

மேலும், தொழில் திட்டமிடல் – இயற்கை வழி விவசாயம் சார்ந்த தொழில் வாய்ப்புகள் பற்றிய விவரங்களை பங்கேற்பாளர்களிடத்தில் கொண்டுசேர்த்தது இப்பயிற்சி. 

நிறைவாக கருத்து கேட்டல் & களப்பயணம் – திட்டமிடல் பற்றிய ஆலோசனைகளும் இடம்பெற்றது. 


திரு.பார்த்தசாரதி, திரு.ராஜகணேஷ், திரு.கிறிஸ்டியன், திரு.ராதாகிருஷ்ணன், திரு.சத்யராஜ், திரு.கிருஷ்ணா, திரு.லக்ஷ்மிநாராயணன் & Ms.சாவித்திரி.