The Earth Trust

Earth Trust works to give tools to tribals and villagers to farm their land in a sustainable way, to develop responsibility for Primary Health solutions with traditional answers and to give rural children inspiration, skills & passion for revitalising their communities & land. Email: earthtrust@gmail.com
Dec 30, 2015

ANNUAL REPORT FOR THE PERIOD OCT 2014 TO SEPT 2015

 

THE EARTH TRUST ANNUAL REPORT FROM OCTOBER ’14 TO SEPTEMBER ’15.

 

The Earth Trust is a service organization trying very hard to make a difference to the Nilgiris District.

Our core activities are farming, Health programmes for women, working with the Kurumba Tribals at Droog and the eco-club programmes for school children.

We have small holdings at Holabettu, Kollimalai, leased land at Thambatty and YWCA Ooty. We no longer lease the latter two.

The Holabbettu and Kollimalai farms grow vegetables organically and bio-dynamically, are Training/Resource Centres and will evolve as centres for Safe-seed growing.

The cuttings propogated in these farms are sold at subsidized rates to farmers and the medicinal plants to the women in our Health and Income Generation Programmes and to the Tribal women at Droog. They are distributed free of cost to the Government school children in our eco-clubs.

A report by its very definition reduces, in this case, human effort, struggles, successes and setbacks to figures in a table at best or colourful graphs. These by their ability to convey at a glance a picture, are necessary. It becomes difficult for the writer of the annual report to be completely objective and not be constantly reminded of the odds against the backdrop of which, the figures and percentages unfold.

So, while reading the farming report, you also have to visualize the bison trampling over the fences and destroying in one night the labour of two months. This has happened at least 4 times in Holabettu. For Jaikumar of our farming team, this involves, each time, repairing the fence and starting all over again- a daunting task. We also as a principal always follow the dictum that we live and work with Nature. All the environmental ills facing the whole world have arisen out of a need to control, forgetting that “No man is an island”.

While reading the report on cuttings, you have to picture Jayalakshmi of our farming team, calling at the office in a panic, that the wind had blown away the plastic sheet under which she nurses and nurtures her cuttings, or that the rain had collected in the plastic sheet and was threatening to tear it down and drown the young plants.

The Health Programmes and Income Generation programmes are subject to village activities---- a funeral will shut everything down, a wedding or festival will throw every single carefully orchestrated activity out of schedule. But the love with which the village people greet our Teams helps us make light of every single chaos. The relationships forged carry on for years. A random meeting with someone who calls out in a bus or some office—Ma’am, don’t you remember me, I attended the Earth Trust IGP programme in Kilinjada----- makes every single moment worthwhile.

If there is one programme that is very heart -warming it is the Eco-club programme. Children are a joy to work with. We at Earth Trust never forget that they will carry the burden of this environmentally damaged world on their shoulders. We try and inform them through play and activities.

Please find attached all our facts and figures for the period October ’14 to September ’15. 

Farming Programmes.

A total of 17 awareness programmes were held in 17 villages where 629 participants were alerted to the dangers of chemical farming and sensitized to the need for natural/organic farming. This is what their grandfathers and great grandfathers had been doing anyway-----. We try and emphasize the importance of food security and safe-seed sources to them. It is hard work, because they do not want to leave their comfort zones. We were able to set up 27 herbal gardens and 6 vegetable gardens in these villages. We held 5 training programmes spread over a year. Ninety-nine farmers who showed keen interest participated. These were held at our Resource farms at Holabettu and Kollimalai. They are free. We have scheduled the next one for the end of January ’16.The farms produced over 50 varieties of 14,231 Kilos of vegetables/herbs. We also produced seeds but just for ourselves and for our farmers. The Resource farms also propagated over 27,972 cuttings/seedlings of herbs, medicinal plants and seedlings. The farmers of Bio-Gain, which comes under the Earth Trust umbrella, produced over 75 varieties of vegetables /fruits/herbs, items like turmeric, traditional varieties of brown rice, tea, coffee etc.  totaling 46,585 kilos.

Health programme

We conducted our Primary Health Care programmes in 9 villages. Over 123 women participated. We set up 77 small medicinal plants/herbs gardens in the houses of the women who were interested. In the Kozhikarai Medicinal preparation Unit, Tribal women prepared and sold 2.3 kgs of Choornams(Triphala and Ashta choornam) , 62 kgs of nutritional flour, 1.6 litres of medicinal oils and 2 litres of medicinal syrup. The Droog Tribal women made 1.350 kilos of Choornams, 20.5 kgs of nutritional flour, 2.450 litres of medicinal oils and 1.3 litres of medicinal syrups. Our Health Team also held Tribal medicinal preparation workshop for 30 students from Jain International School Bangalore combined with a visit to a Shola forest. , farming exposure visits for 10 women from Oranalli, and held awareness on potential of medicinal Plant varieties for over 70 Tribal farmers and medicinal plant growers in the NAWA community hall at Kotagiri.

The Income Generation Programme.

The ET team held these programmes in 6 villages. Each programme covers basic tailoring, knitting sewing etc and is spread over 3 months. Over 83 women participated. The certificates they obtain from Earth Trust help them to get jobs if they so wished. At the end of the 3 months, the women surprise themselves at the variety of garments they are able to stitch! A lot of bonding takes place. This short paragraph will not tell you about the happy chatter and sharing of personal problems in an atmosphere of unconditional acceptance. Everything in life is not about targets and percentages.

The Eco-club programmes

Our programmes are mostly run in Government schools, where the total strength of students is dwindling year by year. We still believe that every child has a right to information that is vital – regarding the environment. This past year, we covered 18 government schools and one private school. A total of 542 children learnt about Shola forests, the environmental damages caused by us humans, how to grow vegetables organically. They were shown many programmes using CDs on Nature as well. A total of 159.4 kgs 10 varieties of vegetables were harvested by these children. These vegetables were then used for their Mid-day Meals, provided by the State Government. 

The journey continues, new faces replace the old, but the vision and soul of Earth Trust stays steadfast and true.  


Attachments:
Aug 27, 2015

Organic Farming Outreach programme in Nilgiri Vill

Organic Farming Outreach programme in Nilgiri VillagesFrom April 2015 to June 2015 

Organic Farming Outreach Programme

Agriculture has been the primary source of income for the majority of families in rural areas of Nilgiris.Unsuitable land management, use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides has led to the deterioration of the soil and the production of unhealthy food. Hence there is an urgent need for introducing the alternative sustainable agricultural techniques in Nilgiris. The EARTH TRUST acknowledges need of organic agriculture   and environmental issues as crucial to the promotion of sustainable livelihoods, peace and development and, in breaking the effects of the vicious circle of unemployment, poverty and migration in the Nilgiris. The Earth trust mobilizes and facilitates collaboration among various partners especially in organic farmers development. It develops concepts and implements programmes with approaches and methodologies that enable its audience to identify problems, set priority, and address needs assessments.

The Earth Trust has been a key player in working towards alleviating the ravages of years of chemical abuse on the soil of the Nilgiri Hills. It has spent a good decade in this tireless effort. As part of its vision to restore the soil it continues its farming outreach with renewed vigour and improved strategy that permeats to one cluster of villages under the same watershed area so that focus is not lost.In the last quarter, the farming outreach to create awarness about organic farming through talks, visual aids and interaction has reached about 500 farmers from which  10 key farmers were chosen for further hands on training in the months to come. Setting up of an organic training centre for each village is on the cards.

OUR AIMS

  • To upgrade the skills and methodologies of organic farming system among rural farming communitis.
  • To facilitate farming community to harness optimum yield from organic agriculture sector.
  • To facilitate a concept of environmental citizenship among the Nilgiris farmers, through the integration of knowledge, sense of responsibility and successful action to mitigate chemical farming
  • To reinforce and reward existing environmentally friendly lifestyles among youth, thereby delaying or reducing the chemicals and pesticides.
  • To integrate the Nilgiris farmers  efforts into the global effort to gain global recognition and support impact

 

  • To reinforce and reward existing environmentally friendly lifestyles among youth, thereby delaying or reducing the chemicals and pesticides.
  • To integrate the Nilgiris farmers  efforts into the global effort to gain global recognition and support impact

 

 

Awareness Programme was conducted in the following villages

 

S.No

Village

No. of Participants

 

1

Ottimora Hosahatty

47

2

Porthy

39

3

Puduhatty

30

4

Mel Appukodu

58

5

Bygamandu

40

6

Melodayaratty

37

7

Godalatty

30

8

Kilkowhatty

33

9

Muttinad

26

10

Muthugula

49

11

B.Manihatty

15

12

Bickol

41

13

Soraigundu

43

14

Gudalur

58

 

Total

546 Farmers

 

Awareness Activities

  1. Introduction about our organization
  2. PPT on Earth Trust  activities
  3. Video show on Slow poisoning of India
  4. Discussion with farmers about organic agriculture and its importance.
  5. Explanation about the farming outreach program.
  6. Discussion and explanation about the organic training centre (OTC) in future.

 

Organic Farming Awareness Programme in GUDALUR Area

The following farmers were monitored for soundness of organic practices in the Gudalur the warmer area of the Nilgiris on their land ranging from 20 cents to 6 acres. These farmers sell their produce through Biogain, The Earth Trust’s marketing outlet.

S. No.

FARMER NAME

PLACE

LAND AREA

1

Selvarathnam

Aruthuparai

3.8ac

2

Thirusenthuran

Selakunnai

4 ac

(Tea 3.5-0.5 veg)

3

Chandran

Selakunnai

30 cent Tea

4

Ramesh kumar

Selakunnai

60 cent tea

50 cent veg

5

R.vijayakumar

Selakunnai

3.5 ac

1.5 ac empty land

6

Sri Gowtham

Thaithamattam

70 cent

7

A.Raghukumar

Thaithamattam

3ac

1.5 banana

8

Ravichandran

Thaithamattam

2ac

50 cent banana

9

Madhusudhan

Thaithamattam

2 ac

10

Udhayan

Ponvail

6 ac

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ORGANIC MARKETING

We have set up an innovative marketing system which gives a stable price (decided with the farmer) for his vegetables.  It is based on an average of the widely fluctuating price of chemical vegetables plus 10%.

Vision

It was planned to support the sales of vegetable until such time as enough vegetables to were grown to cover the cost of marketing & make a small profit.

At that point Biogain would take over the marketing coat & give over the small management & training contribution to ET.

It was intended that ET would act as farm gate sales point that vegetables would be sent directly to customer by passing middle man.

Vegetable marketing from 47 farmers through our BiOGAiN (Bio dynamic Organic growers association) market by our  farmers and from our model farms.

The impact that Earth Trust has is more qualitative that it is quantitative and we strive for greater reach. This we will achieve with generous support from Global Giving.

 

The Earth Trust, Hema Cottage, Bharathinagar, Ketti Post, Nilgiris 643215 TN

Website: www.earthtrustnilgiris.org; email: earthtrust @gmail.com; Tel.:+914232517036

 

 

 

 


Attachments:
Apr 24, 2015

GENERAL HEALTH CAMP FOR RURAL VILLAGES IN NILGIRIS

Dr. Ram Explaining general health care
Dr. Ram Explaining general health care

 

The Earth Trust provides and supports a process whereby people learn to improve their personal habits and attitudes and to work responsibly for the improvement of health conditions in the family, community and nation. Every member of the health team shares responsibility in providing health education. 

It aims to help people make use of their own efforts and education in improving their conditions of living, lodging, good nutrition and prevention of diseases.

It is a means of improving the health of the people by employing various methods of scientific procedures to show the most healthy ways of living.

Recently we conducted the Primary Health care training & Income generation training in Kenthala Village & Koderi village.  As a part of the training we have conducted a free general health camp for our trainees at Kenthala village, Coonoor Taluk, The Nilgiris,  on 29th January 2015. The camp was organized by The Earth Trust and The PSG hospitals Coimbatore.

The team members include Dr.Ramakrishnan of PSG hospitals, Dr. Sheila Chandran, Consultant of the Earth trust with support from the health trainers Ms. Meera & Ms. Vaijayanthimala and Ms. Vasantha a volunteer from Coonoor.

Free physical examination along with free Blood sugar, Blood pressure, HB count and Eye sight check up were done.

A power point presentation presented by Dr.Ramakrishnan on

  1. Blood Pressure.
  2. Diabetes.
  3. Anemia

36 beneficiaries including the trainees and our staff were benefitted from this programme. The participants are given an effective awareness of the above diseases and also all of them were discussed with the doctors about their chronic problems and their ongoing treatment.

 

 

  

    

Checking blood presure
Checking blood presure
Introduction about health camp
Introduction about health camp
Eye Sight checking
Eye Sight checking
PPT on blood presure
PPT on blood presure
Discussion about health issues
Discussion about health issues

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