Agriculture Ministry of the Government of Maharashtra visit in SSRDP
Sri Sri Rural Development Programme (SSRDP) Trust has been engaged by the Agriculture Ministry of the Government of Maharashtra to train around 5000 Krishi Mitras and Krishi Tai from 15 districts of the state on Climate Resilient Agriculture and Community Mobilization. These Krishi Mitras and Krishi Tais are village-level agricultural motivators appointed by the Government, and they serve as a link among the various institutions and stakeholder groups involved in the state Government's Project on Climate Resilient Agriculture (PoCRA), which is supported by the World Bank. 15 districts of the state are covered by the project: Aurangabad, Nanded, Latur, Parbhani, Jalna, Beed, Hingoli, Osmanabad, Akola, Amravati, Buldhana, Yavatmal, Washim, Wardha and Jalgaon. In just one month since the start of this programme, SSRDP has already completed the training of around 2000 Krishi Mitras and Krishi Tais from these districts. It was against this background that the Honourable Agriculture Minister of Maharashtra, Dr. Anil Bonde, visited the Art of Living International Centre at Bangalore, on the 23rd and 24th of September, 2019. He was accompanied by his family and a few members of his official team. Dr. Bonde took Gurudev's blessings and discussed several proposals with Him about working with the Art of Living for the revival and growth of the agriculture sector in Maharashtra. Trustees and Directors from various Trusts and Departments within the Art of Living interacted with the Hon'ble Minister at Shuka Hall. SSRDP's team made a presentation before the Hon'ble Minister about the progress of the Capacity Building workshops and further plans for programmes to support the Project on Climate Resilient Agriculture. Bhaskar Magar, one of SSRDP's Master Trainers for this project, shared his experiences about the change of mindsets and behaviours that he observed among the participants during the 3-day capacity building workshops. Shri Prabhakar Rao, Trustee, Sri Sri Institute of Agricultural Sciences and technology, made an informative presentation on Climate Resilient Agriculture using natural farming techniques propagated by Art of Living.
'Make your own' Eco friendly Ganesha Workshop
SSRDP added to the festivities at the Art of Living International Centre by oraganizing Ganesha making workshop for the visitors. Children, youth and adults participated with great zeal and joy, the workshops were also conducted in SSRVM schools across bangalore for around 1100 children. The hands on experience of making their own eco friendly Ganesha kindled creativity and awareness about eco friendly ways to celebrate festivals. Each participant took back a Ganesha idol, and a unique and true reflection of what the festival means to them.
Eco friendly Ganesha Idols
Paying reverence to Mother Earth is the true celebration. On the auspicious occasion of Ganesh Chaturthi, SSRDP promoted the message of 'Care for Environment' by selling eco friendly Ganesha idols at the Art of Living International Centre, Bangalore, made of natural soil, handcrafted with devotion and purity, around 300 idols were sold to commence the festivities this Ganesha Chaturthi.
SSRDP community help and assistance..
a.Installation of Arsenic removal plants in Majuli Island district. We finally reached the target of installing five plants in the Majuli districts on 16th February. All of them are functioning efficiently. We have also encouraged the villagers to installed mini/ individual plants in their respective homes and hamlets. Our AOL volunteers will carry out periodic visits and maintenance work as appropriate. This will also include drinking water testing. The following villages and locations are benefited at Dakhinpat Satra, Harighat Rangali Bahar High School and 99 no Kothal Khua Kothomiya L.P. School, Village Kathamiya, Majuli.
b. Community School Aid- A Tribal youth has constructed a semi permanent school building with hostel facilities for thirty tribal students both boys and girls in the historical village of Garbhanga,forty kilometers away from Guwahati. The village is without road, electricity, health facilities or any other community outfits. He had to do this with local community help and assistance. We visited the school at the end of the month of January and surveyed the basic needs of the school. Appropriate assistance like solar lights, cloths, food stuff and woolen blankets were provided. A small sum of Rupees 5000 was given to carry out maintenance work as required. We will be visiting them again at the beginning of the monsoon months. We have also established a hot link between us.
Nothing is impossible for the die hard, AOL volunteers from the AOL Hengrabari Center, Guwahati. They have proved this once again on 7th July, by delivery 700 kilos of food items, clothes, mosquito nets, soaps, paste/ tooth brushes and other essential items. The recipients were the makeshift school at the village Garbhanga, located on the mountain tops of the Rani Hills region. This was possible only after two failed attempts. Our sturdy volunteers, both boys and girls completed the task after five hours hardship and determination. Even the 4*4 wheels drive failed to negotiate the muddy track, under heavy rains and thunders. The school is surrounded by eleven Hamlets/ villages dominated by primitive Korbi Hill tribes. There are no roads, no water , no electricity or medical help even after 70 years of freedom . Community help is their only source of external help and assistance. We do carry out three large scale community assistance every year in this region. The school houses 40 boys and girls, all under aged (less than 10 years), neglected by their parents and the society. We packed aid material to last three months till the end of the Monsoon months.Our objective was to educate the children, to reduce hunger and alcoholism among the people. Our continuous visits and social contacts have already brought down the religious conversion rate among the tribal population. The villagers gladly accepted a framed photograph of Gurudev and installed the same in their school hall with pride and joy.
The volunteers returned back to the base after 12 hours grueling walk and drive. Fortunately the wild herd of elephants did not bother them on this occasion.
Assam Flood Updates
All the districts in Assam continues to be under heavy flood water and in many places river Brahmaputra and its 92 tributaries are flowing above the danger mark. The situation is further aggravated by the release of major dam in the state of Bhutan. The water level is not coming down as expected. This is an unprecedented flood in the last 50 years. The root causes are unplanned and haphazard big dams in the catchment areas in the hilly regions. Otherwise the natural flood water recedes within 24-36 hours. We at AOL, Hengrabari Centre Guwahati is taking the lead once again on distribution of relief materials all over Assam step by step. We have already covered some parts of Kamrup Rural districts, Morigaon District, Bokakhat(particularly in Kaziranga). A major flood relief consignment has been moved to the island district of Majuli. We are also taking care of Arsenic Removal Plants installled by AOL in Majuli.
We will continue to update you on the flood situation as and when required.Relief materials are coming from civilian sources and AOL as well. So far we have sent relief goods to 12000 people.