– By Gunaavatar Das
Several activities have been going on at Yasodapura Eco Village in the past several months. Rainy season is also growing season, which is already in full swing for this year. Families who work at our land have begun to cultivate the land.
We have made one year agreement with them to use our land- one hectare for one family. Further, they either need to give 15 % of the harvest or pay an equivalent sum of money. Now we have about 6 families. They grow rice, corn and cassava, during the end of the season they would stay on the land for about 3-4 months. All these details related to stay and further have been taken care of in the agreement. This would facilitate smooth cooperative relationship between us and help them serve Lord Krishna and Lord Buddha.
We have two families as our permanent residents. They have been staying there all the time. One of them is an old widow mother with 3 kids. Her husband had passed away a few years ago, leaving her without any support and in poor state. She has two grown up sons working as labors in the city.
The new family
Very soon we are going to build a new cottage for this new family. We will also try to adopt one or two cows for them to take care. They like to grow vegetables. By having a cow, they will get enough cow dung for composting.
Our devotees have also started the first nursery at Yasodapura Eco Village. It is spread in an area of about 10 m2. Last month, we started with about two hundred jack fruit seeds and now it has started growing up. We also plan to get other seeds like that of mango, of drum stick, and of cashew nut. After four months we can transplan them on the main land. We will similarly continue to grow many seeds for the next rainy season.
This nursery is using cow dung compost that we had taken from the nearby village. Last month we collected about 20 bags of compost and brought them to our land. But during the months of August to December, a few villagers will graze their cows on our land. In this process, we will get cow dung. Last year, we had used that for our banana plantation and the result was very good. The bananas grew faster and are now laden with a lot of fruits. Bananas are nice and can also grow very easily. Like rice or some other grains they do not need much maintenance.
We planted about 40 more bananas in the last season and in between we also grew okra or lady finger along with some spinach growing naturally.
We are also in the process to lay down the raja marga (middle road and ring road) on our main land 35.8 hectares Yasodapura Eco Village. Raja marga is about 8meters and ring road is about 4 meters. According to our master plan we will have Lord Vishnu’s statue at the Raja Marga circle , the center of the land. We clean up for the raja marga and for the Ring Road because the old road was already there. We simply made it bigger and it is now almost complete. Hope we could make this master plan attached with this report so that everyone will able to see it.
On the other side of the project, we started to build a new base on the land that we had bought in the village. This location is about 3 kms from Yasodapura. Because of this nearby base next to the main road and near the local villages, will facilitate our volunteers to stay safely. Possibly, we will also open classes for the children and for conducting other programs such as Food for life, and other weekly programs. We will also build small goshala on the side with two cows in the beginning. One small house, made simply with wood and aluminium sheet roof has now come up there. Soon wall and floor work will also be done.
In order to build our relationship with the villagers around us, we have been doing regular Food for Life program in different villages (for details kindly refer to our other article/s in our website www.iskconcambodia.com).
We wish to thank you very much for all your attention, help and support. We seek your mercy so that we can continue our service in Cambodia, and thus spread the glory of Srila Prabhupada.