Annadanam · meals for the poor
"The more a species is rare
the more we like and protect it...
So what about humans?”
- Erik Tanghe
Traditionally a typical community was a big family; everybody in the community was supported in a similar way to the support rendered to different members within a family.
The Punarnava/vaidyagrama family aspires for this entire community to be a big family; and to create this feeling of a family, we have commenced a food preparation and sharing program which is envisaged to bring all members of the community together. Further the members of this family who really need support due to age or sickness or loneliness are being given at least one meal every day thereby making them feel “wanted” members of this family
Our vision is to bring everybody together irrespective of caste, creed, colour, religion, race, wealth etc. And create a need based community as opposed to a greed based community where the welfare and happiness of the entire community is primary to each member of the community
Annam · project food
"Cast me not off in the time of old age; forsake me not when my strength faileth”
- Psalms 71:9, The Bible
We believe it is our duty to take care of the elderly and needy in our community. A sustainable community can be guided by the wisdom of the elderly and thus live in harmony with all life forms.
Of the total population of the villages, 30% are old and some of them are disabled and needy and are destitute. We recognize the need of these villagers and provide hot meals every afternoon to 100 old, destitute and needy villagers from 12 villages of the panchayat.
The old people selected for the above project are abandoned by the younger members of the family who have left the village seeking better livelihood.
Since January 2015, the Trust has begun providing their mid-day meals, 6 days a week, supplying the food packed in steel containers at their doorstep. The old people are also beneficiaries of the medical camp where they get to meet a Doctor and get free medication.
Punarnava Trust believes in permaculture, wherein the agricultural ecosystems are intended to be sustainable and self-sufficient. Rainwater harvesting is done on a large scale. Raised beds are made and the seeds are planted on them. Mulching is done using dead leaves, coconut husks and hay. The need for watering is considerably reduced as the evaporation of water is reduced due to natural mulching.
Water is also recycled with help of biogas plant. The recycled water from the settlement tank is reused in the gardens. The solid residue from the biogas plant is used as manure and the gas is used in cooking.
Natural Farming helps the Trust create jobs for the villagers, who are also served breakfast and lunch (free of cost) in addition to their wages. This therefore is a source of livelihood for the landless, poor villagers. Vaidyagrama and Balagrama also employ village locals in housekeeping, garden, kitchen departments among others.
Trust grows vegetables like okra, green chilies, tomato, tapioca, papaya, drumstick, spinach (green and red), red pumpkin, white pumpkin, bottle gourd, ridge gourd, banana, coconut are grown in the gardens. The vegetables are consumed at Vaidyagrama and are used for the community lunches.
Lakshmigrama · goshala and cow shelter
"One should be considered dear, even by the animal kingdom.”
- Atharva Veda 17.1.4
A sustainable community is one where human beings live in harmony with all life forms.
Lakshmigrama is home for 21 cows and 9 bulls belonging to the community. The cow dung is used as manure in the Punarnava gardens. The dried cow dung is burnt along with herbs and the smoke is used for warding off mosquitoes at Vaidyagrama. The cow urine and cow dung along with milk, curd and ghee are used in making panchagavya which has medicinal values as well as a pesticide and fertilizer in our gardens. The milk from the cow is used in medicine preparation as well as for buttermilk for patients.
The cow is a revered animal and hence every Friday a cow Puja is done at Vaidyagrama.
Balagrama · childrens' home
A community is made of men, women and children along with all life forms that support us in our daily life. Children need nurturing and care. The unfortunate ones among the community who are orphans, or children of single parents or even children of parents who work far away from their villages leaving their children in the care of their relatives for whom they are a burden, will be looked after by us at Balagrama - the Children’s Home.
We plan to bring 30 such children, and more when we are ready and are equipped.
Presently we have constructed 4000 sq ft space for Balagrama. We have to construct the kitchen and that work is ongoing, complete with the necessary licenses and permits from all government departments.
We propose to send the children to local schools for their regular studies. We have planned a “How to Live” school for imparting vocational training for the children, like carpentry, masonry, electrician, plumbing etc so that they become able members of the future community.
We invite each and every one of you to support us by sharing your skills, which we can use for publicity and help in day-to day running of Balagrama by volunteering at our community.