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Thursday, June 25, 2009

Self reliance is the key for brighter future

Neeraj has been doing really good work on this blog by posting lot of useful information and path breaking ideas.
So, thought to contribute to his efforts. I came across one great example of a simple design and its effectiveness. Working Villages International (WVI) is a non-profit organization dedicated to building self-sufficient, environmentally sustainable villages all over the world. Based on Gandhian principles it works on strengthening rural people by making them self reliant by developing a sustainable local infrastructure utilizing on local resources.
Most amazing thing is that in current economic conditions when trillion of dollars are required to fill the development gap between Sub-Saharan Africa and rest of the world, WVI’s founder Alexander Petroff has provided a successful alternative to such an impossible scenario. This idea is based on concept of Swadeshi given by Mahatma Gandhi.

Their idea of Self Sufficiency takes actionable shape with 3 important things vis-à-vis: Selecting Appropriate Technology, Developing Local resources (Swadeshi) and Rotational planting and Composting.

The plan works in 5 stages:-

Stage one focuses on growing crops and building the infrastructure to support crop production and storage.

stage two, build up the manufacturing capacity to build the village itself.

Stage three is the production of all non-agricultural commodity infrastructures, such as looms, pottery kilns, paper pulpers, bakeries or any other necessary function of daily life.

stage four, people are trained in different trades. As they gain competence and expertise, WVI turns over ownership to the village and its inhabitants.

stage five, WVI remain in whatever advisory capacity the local villagers want, but without any ownership or employment function. The village will at this point be a fully functioning and independent eco-community, housing and employing thousands of people without ever requiring another dollar of foreign aid. (Source:

I personally feel that just to design or innovate something we are running after technological advancements but going ‘Back to roots’ is very essential in prevailing environmental conditions. The pace at which we are running nature is unbelievable and we need to go back to Vedic life style to preserve nature.
For more details you can visit