In addition to our local environmental projects, we continue to financially support several international projects in Africa and India. Through the simple act of recycling and reusing clothes Gaia is able to donate the proceeds of the sales from the clothes collection program to help people in Africa and India. Gaia has combined our work in recycling with direct international development assistance that helps to improve the living conditions for the world’s less fortunate people.
Our approach of saving the environment by diverting clothes from the landfill while working to help those who are most affected by global warming is part of a strategy to restore balance to the Earth. It is an approach that embraces environmental stewardship, while acknowledging the link between social and ecological progress.
This combination of recycling and development is what makes Gaia Movement USA, a truly unique environmental organization. Gaia continues to financially support ongoing environmental
projects in Africa and India.
Below is a description of some projects we are helping to fund.
Co-funding of Connect International Project in Mozambique and Zambia
Gaia has introduced and made available low cost technologies to improve access to water and basic sanitation to 3,000 water points, 6,000 latrines, and 20,000 filters for household water treatment. The project reaches 1 million people and helps to raise awareness on how to prevent water borne illness.
Co-funding Pumps for Life in Zambia
Gaia has supported this project since 2008. The purpose is to improve income generation, livelihood, and the environment for 5,000 households in 250 village action groups through technology and training.
The project actions include production of simple low-cost water pumps for wells, training local pump installers and maintainers, training in water-efficient farming methods, and training of agricultural committees.
Biofuels Projects in Guinea-Bissau
The project mobilizes, trains, and organizes farmers to significantly improve productivity and food security while contributing to the economic growth of the local economy.
The pilot project is underway in Guinea Bissau. The objectives after three years are as follows:
- Average 10% to 15% increase in income among 1,500 households.
- 25% of households will have an increase in health and well being.
- 25,000 jatropha trees planted.
- First 10 tons of jatropha or other oil seeds collected and processed to oil.
- 1,000 liter of fuel substituted with biofuel.
- 10 biofuel based equipment mounted or adapted.
- 1,500 farmers trained in seed selection, planting and production. Plus an additional 100
farmers took courses in biofuel marketing.
- 20 students trained at the vocational school in biofuel technique.
- 30 agricultural extension workers received short courses in jatropha growing and biofuel
- About 25% of the farmers have increased diversification of crops and a 15% increase in
average in marketing of farm production.
The project and its successes will be considered as a model for farmers in other communities and regions to follow. Over the years, te project will hopefully create a surplus, which will be invested in further expansion in the import of biofuel equipment, the planting of new areas for jatropha, new waste processing equipment to produce biogas. Moreover, biofuel production techniques will become more commonly known and will become a regular component in agricultural development programs for the future.
Eco-Service Center in Tamil Nadu, India
In 2009, Gaia supported the establishment of the Eco-Service Center which provides agricultural services for the community. The local farmers get assistance to establish new ways of producing crops as well as new water and energy saving techniques. The Center has reached 1,500 people from 5 different villages. Fiver farmers clubs and five women self help groups have been established due to this project.
In addition, this project has enabled community based groups and individual farmers to learn environmentally friendly farming technologies, methods for conservation of water, water saving irrigation techniques and methods. There has been an increase in income generation and crop production for the farmers who have applied the methods taught at the Center. The Center has helped improve the quality of life for people living in the villages since they now have easy access to healthy food through the garden farms that have been established.
Green Action Project in Bhinkanpur Village, Ghaziabad District, India
The Green Action Project mission is to empower the poor farming communities in five different villages by assisting them to form community organizations while trying to connect them to credit facilities and government programs. The project also educates villages on how to establish organic farming and how to generate income from the sale of vegetables. Villages are also taught the benefits of eating organic vegetables and composting. All project staff members conduct meetings with Farmer's Club members and villagers to discuss new agricultural technologies with help from experts who organize training programs and help them obtain various forms of government funding.
In addition, the project has planted hundreds of tree saplings in villages, school campuses, and around ponds to help combat air pollution and soil erosion.
Solar Energy Projects in Uttar Pradesh, India
The project is installing solar charging stations and training Self Help Groups, supporting women to improve their livelihood by teaching them how to become entrepreneurs. The project is also providing environmental education programs including tree planting actions with children and youth-- teaching them to become environmental stewards.
Overall, this project has reached more than 35,000 people providing them with clean energy and educating them on current environmental issues such as global warming and climate change.