“We have found that we can take care of ourselves and our family effectively by using surrounding facilities, traditional medicine plants and herbs. We are not dependent on other medications any more. The home herbal gardens have brought such a relief to us. Thanks to the Art of Living Volunteers.”
– A villager from Satara Dist.
Medication even for simple ailments like headache, cough and cold, body pains continues to be a luxury in most of rural India. This is primarily because of lack of resources to avail medical help and medicines. To address the issue, we came up with a sustainable intervention program of creating Home Herbal Gardens (HHGs).
Our team traveled to various villages and conducted information sessions on medicinal herbs and their uses. Subsequently, we educated all the interested households through trainings on how to create HHGs. The result was the creation of 620 gardens in a period of less than a year.
We reached out to over 2500 people across villages in Satara and Phaltan districts through awareness programs, Nav Chetna Shivirs and village visits. In addition 46 village Panchayat leaders were sensitized and inspired to lead the cause.
How does the journey look so far?
46 village Panchayat leaders
620 home herbal gardens
across 18 different villages
Over 1500 people sensitized
through 21 awareness programs, 5 Nav Chetna Shibirs and 36 village meetings
1108 people reached out
through 175 village visits
22 volunteers trained
to train peers on various aspects of HHG
How did we work?
We started by comprehensively documenting all the relevant herbs that we assessed would suit the climate of the two districts. To that list we added another 9 herbs that were commonly used locally and created a “Guidelines Booklet”. Then through various outreach programs we spread the message to the community and conducted trainings. Subsequently, we helped people to set up small gardens in their households.
What did we learn?
Information about various herbs used to be common knowledge among the rural people in the not so distant past. Somewhere this knowledge has got lost and the people are mostly unaware of medicinal properties of commonly available herbs. Reviving this knowledge can help the people to solve some of their healthcare problems because good medical help is usually unavailable to them.
How can you contribute?
We would like to run similar programs in other parts of the country so that we can provide cheap and effective healthcare options that are environment friendly.