“We Do Not Inherit the Earth from Our Ancestors; We Borrow It from Our Children.”
Children are the custodians of the future of this planet and this fact needs no validation. However, it does need a lot of work for children to take over the reins of a cleaner and greener planet from the current generation. Climate crisis is no longer an event of the future. It is happening as we speak in different parts of the world where extreme climate is not just destroying properties but is also destroying lives. To overcome this challenge, it is imperative that children study the environment, sustainability and climate change not just in books but also out of the classrooms where the real action is taking place.
Keeping up with the challenges of the climate crisis, the core mission and vision of The GoodLiving Trust was and is to educate everyone about the environment and the importance of sustainability. Keeping in line with this, The Good Living Trust often invites kids to the farm and encourages and engages them in a variety of sustainable activities. They get the most immersive experience at the GLT farm where touching the soil and walking barefoot on grass is an exciting activity out of the many specifically designed things for kids. In fact, recently a bunch of kids from the Ananda Sagara Charitable Trust were invited to experience the lush green farm and have first-hand experience of how food is grown.
Ananda Sagara Charitable Trust works with children of migrant workers and construction workers. Due to the nature of the job, the kids of these workers never find their foothold since they travel with their family from one place to another in search of livelihood. With no constant source of income, these workers often fail to send their children to any educational institute. As a result, their children never get the benefit of formal education. Ananda Sagara Trust however, has a different approach to education. They have an open school system which means education is not limited within the four walls of a classroom. Their classroom extends beyond that. Kids learn best when there are no restrictions. And this charitable trust has been doing an exceptional job at letting kids experience the openness of the sky, the mist in the air and the grainy texture of the soil as is.
As part of this endeavour, when the kids visited the GLT farm, they were engaged in a variety of activities.
They trekked all over the farm and surrounding hilly areas to have an unobstructed view of the place. They collected moss, pebbles and a variety of ferns to create their own terrarium. They were introduced to each and every aspect of the place like understanding the process of farming right from extraction of seeds to harvesting of vegetables. Although it was an educational tour, the kids had the freedom to enjoy the place as they pleased. The kids also had the chance to understand a little about the medicinal properties of certain plants. Under guidance and supervision, they tasted a few herbs and were quizzed about the different aromas that each herb would emit.
After having a tour of the farm and trekking to nearby hills, the kids had a sumptuous meal for lunch.
The best part about an open school is that kids are taught from experience and by being close to nature. They learn from nature which helps them inculcate and imbibe and imitate its qualities. All the kids from the trust brought their own plate and glass for lunch. Post lunch, all of them washed their plates and glasses, thus generating zero waste which is the best kind of waste.
It is not always the elders who teach kids. It’s also kids who can teach elders. They aren’t rigid and beyond the complexities of how to generate profit. They are responsible and with a little guidance and information, they have the ability to transform the society towards the path of greatness. As much as we believe that we teach kids to be responsible, it is the other way round. If we let kids learn without boundaries and borders, they grow up to be more responsible, reasonable and resourceful.
The Good Living Trust is extremely thankful to Ananda Sagara Charitable Trust for walking the journey with these kids from underprivileged backgrounds and helping them transform into the architects of the nation.
To reiterate again, “We Do Not Inherit the Earth from Our Ancestors; We Borrow It from Our Children.”