TOKYO URBAN PERMACULTURE
A thriving urban permaculture project is flourishing in Tokyo. It offers hope for a positive future for young people, and aims to revive traditional sustainable Japanese culture. A group of young people who care about sustainability, permaculture and peace activism are getting together for joyful and collaborative action. Their current project is to create a Permaculture and Peace Dojo. They have an acre of land and a traditional-style 100-year-old wooden house on the outskirts of Tokyo which they are renovating using sustainable practices. They plan to make it a centre where peace activists can explore permaculture and ways of contributing to positive change in the world. They will be ready for receiving volunteers in 2018.
NOURISHING 1000 CHILDREN, MOZAMBIQUE
Instituto de Permaculture de Mozambique (IPERMO)
Mozambique is still recovering from its 1976–1992 civil war. A local not-for-profit, IPERMO, is using permaculture to empower young people to work together to rise out of poverty. One of the programs IPERMO coordinates is ‘Daily Meals’, where they grow organic food for malnourished children. Every day children receive duck, fish or chicken, a variety of vegetables, some bread and clean water to take home. This is a great example of a communityled program of self-reliance, caring for children where no government assistance is available. Among the children being fed are many orphans. Some have tuberculosis and others are born with HIV. It makes a huge difference in their lives. Their teachers too have noticed that the children involved in this program have so much more focus and are improving in their learning. By the end of this year IPERMO hopes to be feeding 1000 children daily. They accept donations to support their valuable work.
GIRLS PERMACULTURE CAMP
Kula Permaculture Farm, Ottawa Canada
What a great idea—summer permaculture camps for girls! These week-long camps are held at one of Canada’s few large-scale permaculture farms, Kula Permaculture Farm. It’s a chance for these girls, aged 8–15, to get in touch with nature, themselves, make lasting friends with like-minded young people, and learn skills to create positive change in the world. They develop outdoor and leadership skills, learn to build, garden and dance, and learn mindfulness, yoga, music, writing and much more. Kula Farm also runs a Community Supported Agriculture scheme, festivals, events, tours and workshops.
WOMEN’S ECOVILLAGE, COLOMBIA
Nashira is an urban ecovillage (in southern Colombia on 3.3 hectares) helping to lift people from poverty. This village was a finalist in the UN World Habitat Awards in 2015 and has been replicated many times in Colombia since. Nashira (meaning song of love) is a matriarchal village, run by women for women who need a place of refuge from violence and suffering, a result of civil war and domestic violence. The women of Nashira have built the 88 homes themselves using a government housing subsidy. Their homes are permanent, safe and rent-free, which helps the women rise from poverty. Together they have formed micro-enterprises to support themselves and are connected to a clean spring water supply. They have also created edible gardens to supply nutritious food for the families that live there as well as some small-scale market gardening. Visitors are welcome to stay in their guesthouse, which is also a microenterprise. Models like this around the world could be of great benefit to those with no secure home or access to land, and could help communities to cultivate a hopeful future.