1987: Status of the Third World fund

The Lost Stories are Bill Mollison's articles published in the print magazine originally named Permaculture, then International Permaculture Journal and finally the Permaculture International Journal that was published between 1978 and 2000.

All stories and other content ©Permaculture Australia unless otherwise noted.

Story by Bill Mollison, 1987. Edition 26.

Feature photo: Bill Mollison and David Holmgren at Australasian Permaculture Convergence 9, 2009, Sydney. ©Russ Grayson 2009 pacific-edge.info

Published as an article in World Visions… and realities

AS YOU ALL KNOW we have collected a very modest Trust-in-Aid fund to assist teachers to go to groups who have requested courses in Third World areas. This small fund, subscribed by our Australian readers, went a long way this year.

Slay and Bill Mollison were able to visit Nepal and India partly from this fund, and in the USA and UK. Badri N. Dahal did miraculous work in Nepal convening an excellent, experienced, and well-qualified group of Nepalese (17 people) and expatriate aid workers (12 people). We believe this proup to be one of the most dedicated, skilledmand experienced that we have ever taught. Badri has already asked for two end-to-end courses, the first for Nepalese women, the second a mixed course, for November December 1987.

We have now very few funds left and will need to raise $5000 to send a teacher from Australia or the US in November. Although the first Nepalese teacher group is convening, they feel that these additional courses (with them acting as assistant teachers) are required in order to gain confidence. Thereafter they will be teaching courses in Nepalese.

Please assist us in raising this $5000 any way you can!

After Nepal, we visited the Deccan Development Society(DDS) and their projects in Zaheerabad (southern India). Joining us was Robyn Francis of Sydney's Permaculture Services. The DDS is convening a course scheduled for July 1987, with Robyn and Bill to teach. The course is funded by EZE, a West German church group, contacted by Vithal Rajan of the Right Livelihood Foundation for this purpose.

Students will be expected to arrange their food network lodging in Hyderabad. We hope to get in excess of 50 students, many of whom are (or can be trained to be) teachers and project workers, and we expect that Hyderabad will set up further courses for India, possibly in conjunction with some of the teachers and graduates from Nepal.

Future plans

There are serious enquiries for courses from Botswana, Lesotho and Zimbabwe in Africa. It would be quite feasible to cover all these in one trip early in 1988. A school teacher (Mary Ann McNealy) in Portland,

Oregon, has offered to try to collect the $6000 needed for the tour from her wages and those of her friends to see that this happens.

The Chile group in South America (see Directory) requested a course, with 20 people definitely interested and without doubt more interested throughout the other South American countries. They can also organise a course for Buenos Aires, Argentina. Brazil could be included in any ant teaching tour as our contact Julio Taborda (Directory) can convene it. Already an, industrialist friend of Bill's has offered to pay a round-trip ticket from the US to Brazil, so we're halfway there!

However, other funds and grants will be needed before a tching tour of South America could be considered.

If we can get to Nepal, Africa and South America to train local teachers, consultants and development workers, we will have achieved a great deal.Let us try then, by hook or by crook, to get the money for Africa and South America by 1988. WE have just $600 left in our Trust-in-Aid but have achieved a great deal with the first $2400 (not the least being life subscriptions  to the Permaculture Journal for the permaculture romps in Nepal, Zimbabwe and Chile, and a set of back issues of the Journal for the Spanish group).

In Nepal, we have funded a fulltime employee for 12 months  researching local domestic crafts and skills. We plan to co-publish with the Permaculture Institute if Nepal a book on local village crafts and skills, recipes etc. What we are trying to develop is mutual aid to promote local funding opportunities for local Institutes. If this is successful we will be repeating it in other countries. We hope that this will benefit us both, with the local Institutes having publishing rights for their own countries and Tagari Publications the right to publish in Australia, New Zealand and the US.

We would be very pleased to hear from experienced funding organisation who could assist in any way with the permaculture courses in Nepal, Africa and South America. These areas deserve your efforts and a modest bit of money. And many thanks to you who contributed that first $2,400!!

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