Svarnim Puducherry



About Svarnim Puducherry

Svarnim Puducherry is a multi-dimensional initiative of Sri Aurobindo Society which aims to initiate and take forward a new course of growth in Puducherry, and subsequently across India.

It is conceived as Society’s offering on the momentous event of India’s 75th Independence Day on August 15, 2022, which is also the 150th Birth Anniversary of Sri Aurobindo, one of the most eminent architects of India’s independence and of human evolution.

In principle, Svarnim Puducherry is an aspiration to building Puducherry as a model state, carrying the spirit and consciousness of true India in its foundation. In concept, design, and implementation of each of its components, Svarnim Puducherry, as an initiative, aims to express – a pursuit for perfection, beauty, unity and creativity, and a realization of the highest of all human values.

Our envisioned Svarnim Puducherry is an inclusive dynamic, progressive, prosperous, beautiful, harmonious, happy and compassionate state.

Proposed Activities of Svarnim Puducherry

Svarnim Puducherry will strive to create Centres of Excellence in the fields of Education, Research, Healthcare, Wellness, Rural Development, Livelihood, Skill Development, Entrepreneurship, Science and Technology, Sustainable Development, Sustainable Agriculture, Environment, Youth and Women empowerment, Child Development, Inclusion, Sports, Leadership, Governance and Administration.

Following are the major dimensions of Svarnim Puducherry

  • Sustainable Economic Growth
    • Sustainable Development of Villages
    • Transforming Agriculture & Livelihood Practices
    • Development of Resilient and Sustainable Cities
    • Sustainable & Ethical Business Practice and Governance
  • Social Transformation
    • Integral Education and Skill Development
    • Women and Youth Empowerment
    • Disability Inclusion
    • Integral Health and Wellbeing
    • Promoting Innovation and Scientific Research
    • Sustainable Lifestyle
    • Preserving and Restoring Natural Resources and Environment
  • Cultural Integration
    • Inclusive Indian culture in cities and villages
    • Promoting Art, Music, Literature, and Cinema
    • Promoting Sports Activities
  • Spirituality in Life
    • Awareness of key tenets of the eternal essence of Spirituality
    • Dynamic Application of True Spirituality in Individual Life, and in the Collective Society
    • Integral Approach to Life
    • Spirituality beyond boundaries of religion, caste, creed, gender or any other distinctions
 

On-going Programs of Svarnim Puducherry

Svarnim Puducherry is an evolving journey that will traverse multiple domains. While it aims to be primarily participative where it will invite new ideas of change from the public and germinate them into real-time transformations, some of its components will include initiatives of Society which are already in the process of creating sustainable scalable replicable models of development. Anyone keen to join these projects is welcome.

1. Education

1.1 Rupantar-Zero Investment Innovation in Education (ZIIEI)

ZIIEI, initiated by Sri Aurobindo Society in Uttar Pradesh and currently being implemented in Pondicherry along with 21 other states in India, facilitates the wide-scale, systematic implementation of grass-roots innovations in Education that can improve existing systems and processes at zero or minimal cost. It is one of the major components of Society’s multi-dimensional transformative education initiative called Rupantar.

ZIIEI focuses on the state-run government schools and empowers the grass-root level teachers to come up with solution-focused zero-investment ideas and systematically document the ideas. The most effective case studies are compiled into replicable cases which are distributed to all the state schools and the school principals are oriented to implement these ideas in their respective schools. The top level and cluster level education officers are also oriented as part of the program. Till date, 15 lakh teachers across the country have been connected through this program. The ideas collected are published for distribution to teachers across the country. Sri Aurobindo Society has also developed a mobile app called ePathhsala which has a structured repository of ideas to help the teachers in finding innovative and effective ways to teach any specific topic.

1.2 Rupantar – Inclusion

Project Inclusion, an important component of Rupantar - the transformative multi-dimensional education initiative of Sri Aurobindo Society, is aimed to be a Comprehensive Mental Health Inclusion Program. Government school teachers are sensitized on inclusive education and neurodevelopmental disorders and trained to identify CWSN from amongst their students. The success rate of the identification, verified by psychologists, has been 90% in all the 12 states it has been implemented in. It also combats with the formidable challenges created by lack of awareness among educators, parents and society in general, social taboos. Lack of low-cost diagnostics and access to treatments. 

1.3 ORC – Our Responsibility to Children

This is a program designed to bring down the juvenile crime rates in Pondicherry. The process involves training teachers in school to identify children with socially deviant inclinations with post-assessment by psychologists. These children along with a few selected peers are then inducted into a program called Smart40 which provides life-skill training and other interventions to develop their interests and potential in constructive activities. The school teachers and parents are involved to make the program effective. It has been running successfully in around 500 schools in Kerala. The plan in Pondicherry is to implement this program in all 144 Government schools.

1.4 SPC – Student Police Cadet

This is a program to train high school students to evolve as future leaders by inculcating in them respect for the law, discipline, civic sense, empathy, resistance to social evils; enabling youth to explore their innate capabilities; imbibing ownership and commitment towards family, society, and environment. This program designed by the Police is aimed to make the student's responsible citizens and be young custodians of peace, harmony, and development in the community.

1.5 Hope

This is designed to be a program to help adolescents who are school dropouts or have failed SSLC or +2 boards get basic academic qualifications and livelihood skills essential for dignified living and for identifying and building on their strengths and interests.

1.6  Nanma

Nanma aims to be a platform for marginalized talented children and youth. The program has components to identify, nurture and develop their potential under the guidance of experienced mentors.

1.7 C Minus 4

The primary objective of this ‘C minus 4’ model is to help middle school students to develop the necessary skills to become knowledgeable, confident and competent individuals. 

In the ‘C minus 4’ model, middle school students (grade C) are mentored and are given specific training to equip them to teach students four years younger (‘minus 4’) to them. Trained in the non-cognitive and cognitive aspects of teaching, and using the proven cross-age peer learning approach to teaching, the ‘C’ students engage in teaching academic subjects to junior students in their respective schools. 

With the ultimate aim of bridging the gap between qualified and employable graduates, this model strives to make the current generation students become confident and knowledgeable youth who have powerful communication and efficient working skills.

1.8 Nature Lab

This is designed to be a Resource Centre which provides an opportunity for students to explore and understand Nature and Environment and thereby also to have a more experiential approach to learning science subjects. Regular programs will be developed with schools (including special schools) so that both teachers and students could use the facilities as they will be the direct beneficiaries. The target age group for this facility will be from class 4th to 12th (9yrs-17 yrs).  The facility could also be beneficial for the Education department as it could be the groundwork to develop resource material.

The center is proposed to be developed in Matrikunj, a 43-acre organic farm of Sri Aurobindo Society near Ousteri Lake.

1.9 Centre of Excellence for Experiential Learning

This is aimed to be a Centre of Excellence aimed to empower teachers for experiential learning techniques. This will be equipped with resources and materials to support learning methods on a wide range of subjects and topics.

1.10 Auropath – Excellence in Higher Education

Auropath is an institutional development program with the goal of preparing higher educational, professional and social institutions to realize their full potential and promote research-based sustainable development. The broad approach of the initiative is to sensitize institutes towards sustainability, contribute National Developmental goals, encourage value education, promote technology both as a vertical as well as a facilitator in the delivery of education, and to raise the quality benchmark to global levels. 

1.11 Other Education programs (to be launched)

  • Multi-skilling / Vocational training for High-school students
  • Tinkering Lab / Innovation Lab to nurture innovative potential of students
  • Project –based Orientation on Social Entrepreneurship / Change making for High-school students
  • Sports Academy for the students with an inclination and talent for sports (including differently abled students)
  • Child-friendly gender-inclusive hygienic infrastructure in schools

For details, please visit Rupantar

2. Health​

2.1 Sanjeevan – Community-based Palliative Care

Sanjeevan is Community-based home care for marginalized palliative patients to provide socio-psychological support along with physical relief. This has been a successful means to create compassionate communities. At present it takes care of 1560 patients across 150 villages in Puducherry and surrounding, with a trained volunteer base of over 1800.

2.2 Sri Aurobindo Centre for Homeopathy (SACH)

Apart from providing homeopathy-based counseling and treatment to several patients on various health issues, SACH takes up several collaborative research projects on the innovative application of homeopathy including in agriculture, in difficult diseases like keloids, and others. The Centre also conducts international conferences and workshops for exchange and dissemination of the latest development and best practices in homeopathy.

 2.3 Centre of Excellence for Integral Wellness

This is a resource center and CoE on Integral Wellness that brings in practices and principles from various dimensions and schools of wellness – western and oriental, ancient and modern. The integral approach addresses wellness at physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual levels and synthesizes different methods including Yogasanas, Diet, Rejuvenating Therapies using music, sound, rhythm, drama, colour and fragrance, Guided meditation and Yoganidra, Acupuncture, Acupressure and individual counselling. Accessible to every individual without any distinction whatsoever, this centre will address both specific issues like deaddiction along with general wellbeing and resilience building.
Incidentally, diabetes, malnutrition, suicide rate, addiction status in Pondicherry are extremely high, with suicide rate being the highest among all states in the country. The centre hopes to eliminate such socio-psycho-medical issues from the state and truly make it a hub for happy living. 

3. Entrepreneurship, Skills and Livelihood   

3.1 Centre of Excellence for Skill Training, Vocational Training and Social Entrepreneurship

This is aimed to be a Centre of Excellence building models in three areas:

Skill Training: a holistic approach to Skill Development where apart from providing training on multiple skills for either wage-based employment or self-employment, orientation on true professionalism will also be part of the curriculum. The trainees will be given NSDC certificates on completion of the short term courses. 

Vocational Training: A comprehensive centre for learning long-term vocational skills with a scope to get a graduation (B Voc degree) certificate on the specific vocation. The course will include soft skills and personality development with special focus on self-awareness and values education.

Social Entrepreneurship: a CoE on SE, where extensive research on various relevant themes will be conducted along with incubating innovative ideas of SE into successful venture with all turn-key support. It will be a hub for institutes / organizations who aspire to develop SE incubation centres. It will also serve as a networking platform for social enterprises, institutes offering incubation centres or SE courses, and experts and patrons on SE.

3.2 Sustainable Livelihood

This project is to create a Sustainable Livelihoods model for Puducherry bioregion through an integrated plan which will help strengthen capital (human, social, natural, physical and financial) linked to the greater resilience of households in poverty addressing the human activities related to land, water, safe food through organic farming through backward and forward linkages. The idea is to make organic produce affordable to all and all production systems shift from a chemical intensive process to less chemical and more natural processes.

4. Rural Development

4.1 SARVAM (Sri Aurobindo Rural and Village Action and Movement)

SARVAM is an Integral Rural Development covering all aspects of individual and community life including health, education, livelihood, youth, women, sanitation, vulnerable and marginalized, digital financial literacy, computer literacy. It is currently working in 22 villages with 20,000 villagers with a special focus on women and youth. It is also running a Community Radio Station reaching out to 50,000 villagers across 30 villagers. It has recently launched a Digital Financial Literacy program exclusively for the women and girls of the community called Digital Sakhi. The foundational principle of SARVAM is to inspire an urge in the community and the individual for self-development, mentor them to understand and initiate the process and subsequently empower them with the necessary skills and means to self-drive their growth. It has been an inclusive, sustainable, scalable and replicable model of integral rural development which has achieved significant transformation in the status of the communities in terms of education, health, women, youth, economic and livelihood status and overall community environment. It has received several national and international recognition for being a model for holistic rural development.For details, please visit SARVAM

5. Sustainable Agriculture

5.1 AHAR – Agro-homeopathy for Sustainable Agriculture

AHAR is an innovative action-research based program that uses homeopathic medicine on plants both as fertilizers and pesticides. This eliminates the possibilities of harmful chemicals infesting the crop and generates purer yields. It is also brings down the cost of farming to a large extent making it also an economically sustainable process of farming. Research is going on to study the impact on different crops, on different categories of soil as well as for different types of pests.

5.2 AuroKrishi

AuroKrishi is a program to enable the ex-servicemen, women, and youth to become agro-entrepreneurs by providing them training in various methods of sustainable farming including organic farming, aquaponics, nursery creation, bee-keeping, bio-inputs preparation, mushroom farming, backyard poultry and goat-keeping. It serves two important objectives – first, of empowering ex-servicemen to be self-employed in their native villages and second, of reviving organic farming and making it technology-enabled and economically feasible.

6. Others

6.1 Disability Inclusion

The differently abled population in Pondicherry is reported to be 30,000 – which includes both mentally disabled as well as physically disabled. Sri Aurobindo Society in collaboration with organizations like Satya Special School and Youth for Jobs working in the field of disability, is working on an initiative to bring focus to disability inclusion in Pondicherry. With a 4A approach (Awareness, Acceptance, Adaptation, and Acceleration) in several dimensions including Health, Education, Livelihood / Employment, and Accessibility, this initiative aims to bring in true inclusion through stakeholder sensitization and empowerment of the disabled so that there is no physical, mental and psychological hurdle in the participation of the disabled in the mainstream social ecosystem with minimum support-dependence. It will invite collaboration and participation from all sectors of the society including government agencies, institutes, community bodies, corporate as well as individuals.

6.2 Model Police Force

This is an action-research based multi-dimensional program with interventions at all levels of the Police Force of Puducherry to create a model Police Force that can be replicated at every state. Senior Police officers across the country will be involved in designing the porgram. The overall aim is to develop a Police Force that is sensitive to the deeper issues of law and order, and empowered physically, mentally, psychologically, and spiritually to address them, bears an attitude to reform rather than punish the deviants, is capable of engaging the community effectively and working in collaboration with it to maintain and sustain law and order. A framework of experiential and interactive interventions with Police personnel is being developed that will identify and enhance their leadership capacities and inner resilience to deal with their work and their life, and the stress in both, more effectively and with greater poise.

6.3 Prisoner Reformation

This is a holistic program to provide integral support to the convicts to help them to renounce crime and re-integrate into mainstream society with dignity and integrity

Interventions for prisoners, prison administration, prison environment and with prisoner families

Intervention components include:

Psychological and spiritual wellbeing of prisoners, administration and prisoner family

  • Life skills and livelihood empowerment (prisoners)
  • Healthcare and hygiene for all
  • Sensitization and engaging of officials on the rehabilitation process
  • Developing prison infrastructure and functioning which are conducive to rehabilitation
  • Education support for prisoner children during imprisonment

6.4 Indian Culture and Sanskrit

This initiative tries to explore, understand and promote the deep essence of Indian culture and its various classical and folk forms including dance, music, theatre, sculpture, paintings. Extensive research is conducted to map the innate elements of Indian culture with the different aspects of the evolution of Indian civilization from its root to its contemporary state.  The research findings have been published through highly acclaimed illustrative books and multi-deck CDs and will further be published through films and other digital media.

A special focus is on the ancient language of India – Sanskrit, which has been recognized as a highly conscious and powerful language. Through multiple workshops, conferences and digital and print publications, the importance and relevance of Sanskrit in modern times is being reinforced to a wide range of audience. The ancient scriptures of India – including Gita and Vedas, have been converted into comprehensive multimedia CDs. Interesting books for children have been published in Sanskrit to popularize Sanskrit in students. Regular classes on Sanskrit are conducted for various levels of learners – basic, intermediate and advanced. For details, please visit SAFIC

6.5 Purposeful Tourism

Pondicherry is a well-known global tourist destination. However, much of its true essence remains unknown to the tourists who get to merely indulge in the usual pleasures of an erstwhile French colony with its quiet beach and European cuisine. Even the strong spiritual foundation of the place remains too subtle for one to feel it deeply. The aim of this initiative is to provide an experience of true Pondicherryin all its spiritual, cultural, natural and social dimensions. This will include experiential and holistic activities for the tourists so that they finally return with a deep sense of fulfillment and purpose.

Participation

Every individual or organization, inspired to be part of a transformative movement towards a Golden Pondicherry in all aspects, are welcome. Participation can be in any field and in any form. Our aim is to make Svarnim Puducherry a truly inclusive endeavor where all stakeholders – state governments, central government, social organization, public, private, community, individuals, institutions and corporate – bring in their ideas, efforts, and resources as partners in driving Puducherry to become a model Indian state.

(People from Pondicherry anywhere in the world)

(Mention the names of the existing partners)

Note:

  1. There are no qualifying criteria. Anyone and everyone who find the concept appealing, can join us or contribute.
  2. Persons who are connected to Pondicherry, or anyway love Pondicherry, but are staying outside are welcome to re-strengthen their bonds with the place by means of this initiative.
  3. Individuals or organizations, from anywhere in the world, not necessarily linked with Pondicherry, but inspired with the idea of a collaborative venture to develop a state, are welcome to engage with the initiative.
  4. Senior citizens who would like to join with us in defying the term ‘Retirement’ by actively participating to build the model state of Pondicherry have a special place in our team.
  5. The ideas or models that will be collected through this initiative will be considered for turnkey support and incubation into sustainable revenue-generating social enterprises through the Society’s upcoming Social Entrepreneurship Centre.

Please connect with us:

  • If you have an innovative idea for bringing a positive change in Puducherry
  • If you are already working on a developmental project for Puducherry and would like to scale it up
  • If you would like to be part of the team and help in conceptualizing, designing, managing or implementing the initiatives
  • If you have conducted research or are interested in conducting research in any field aligned to the vision
  • If you would like to give fund support to Svarnim Puducherry in general or for a specific cause undertaken
  • If you are aware of a specific issue in Puducherry that you think Svarnim Puducherry should address

Please provide the following details: Click here to fill the form

 

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