Prasad Australia Summer 2014 Newsletter
Going GREEN Organic farming in the Tansa Valley – because it works
In This Issue:
- How PRASAD helps farmers more…
- Sunita: Women farm too more…
- Supporter Scott Fry, Loving Earth more…
- Yoga Moon: Bending over backwards to help more…
- What difference your $30 can make more…
- Meet your Board more…
Before PRASAD Chikitsa’s programs, many farmers like Sandeep were isolated and ill informed, growing rice in the rainy season and struggling to find work in the dry season, often migrating to brick camps. Their small plots of land exhausted, some resorted to high interest loans they could not repay and gave up.
PRASAD supports five Farmers Clubs with more than 200 members, and has educated thousands of people how to increase crop output, conserve water and farm all year round. Clubs work with the Indian National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development to secure loans they could not get as individuals, buy seed and equipment at bulk rates, and help each other harvest and transport.
Experts find organic farming is ideally suited to India’s drylands. Organic methods mean no run off of harmful toxins, nothing to poison the earth or animals; no expensive start up, and much lower ongoing costs. More on natural pesticides and composting Read More…
Women Farm Too
Mrs Sunita Labde works hard in her field each day. She joined PRASAD Chikitsa’s orchard initiative last year and receives regular guidance in organic orchard management. PRASAD sponsored visits to other growers inspired her to cultivate vegetables as an interim crop in her orchard.
In December 2013, Sunita took out a loan from her local Self-Help Group for vegetable cultivation and planted eggplants, tomatoes, beans and radishes.
By February 2014, Sunita and her husband were selling their produce at the local markets and weekly bazaars, and making a good profit.
Sunita said, “We really respect and love PRASAD because they treat us like family.”
About 2750 women belong to our Self-Help Groups, learning new skills and confidence, generating income and becoming self reliant. When families struggle, the girls are expected to leave school and go to work. Now, with PRASAD’s help, more daughters stay in school. Sons as well as daughters see their mothers being successful and planning their future.
Self-Help Groups have planted thousands of trees around villages and schools throughout the region- helping to restore the environment, provide food and a cash crop. Mango and chikku trees are popular fruits and are easy to sell. Amidst the trees, they plant marigolds and chamomiles; spinach, peppers and squash.
Your gift of $11 a month ($130) will support a Self-Help Group for a year.
Our wonderful supporters
Scott Fry, Founder of Loving Earth foods, https://www.lovingearth.net.
Scott was inspired to start the company by working with rice farmers and studying yoga in rural Maharashtra, India. Rice prices were so low farmers were selling their top soil to make bricks. There had to be another way.
“We decided a focus of Loving Earth had to be to support these communities by bringing their raw materials into developed markets, enabling us to pay good premiums back to the farmers.”
Loving Earth works with indigenous organic growers around the world, including the Aboriginal Nyul Nyul people in Australia’s Kimberleys, serving the growing demand for pure, ethically produced food.
“PRASAD is doing such great community development work in the Tansa Valley including helping local farmers grow produce organically. We support them as a way of giving back to these communities where we received the inspiration to create Loving Earth.”
August is Yoga Moon month – an innovative online fund raising event that targets yoga practitioners and yoga schools.
Participants discover the power of setting a positive intention and dedicate their practice to building a brighter future for women and children in the Tansa Valley. They also offer a donation.
Yoga Moon raised $4000 this year, boosting the awareness of PRASAD among a wider community and attracting new donors.
Many thanks to our generous official Yoga Moon 2014 supporters, Natio beauty products www.natio.com.au and Find Yoga yoga directory www.findyoga.com.au and to acclaimed jeweller Zara Collins, www.zaracollins.com
Thank you to the tireless Yoga Moon team and many generous yoga schools and students and teachers who make it possible.
Your gift will help more families like Sandeep’s and Sunita’s help themselves, and get the medical services they need.
- $10 seeds for one kitchen garden
- $30 malaria treatment for 12
- $50 an orchard – 10 fruit trees for 5 years
- $50 restore sight- cataract surgery for one
- $130 support a Self-Help Group for one year
- $1000 vocational scholarship for one year
Donations are tax deductible.
Every gift is gratefully received. Your ongoing support – from just $10 a month – is best to help us plan this work.