Actions to implement are as follows:
1) Create scoping document and finalize team (Dec 08 - Feb 09)
2) First Rock Your Life SAGE Tour of the region (March 09)
3) First funds committed and team exposed to village on daily basis (June 09)
4)Projects underway as per scoping document (Aug 09)
- For the SAGE School of Creative Crafts the first phase of development would encompass classrooms facilities, library, meeting rooms, outdoor activity areas, and residential facilities for students and caf?.
- The SAGE Foundation needs to raise US million to have this ready from start to finish, and this sum includes both faculty and other infrastructure. The land is earmarked, 200 villagers are ready to be trained, and the architect and faculty are also identified. The only limiting factor is that currently we currently do not have sufficient funds.
The next phase would include development of museum, retail outlet, exhibition gallery and other amenities.
The SAGE Foundation commits to building a model village in Maharashtra, India which will focus on educating and providing villagers with handicraft skills so that they can be self-sufficient. Through this project, the SAGE Foundation seeks to end hunger and impoverishment. The entire project is to be executed in partnership with Rock Your Life, a global transformational coaching organization.
The SAGE Foundation already sponsors a number of villages in India-most of them have exceptional needs and those needs are not being fully met through the current aid model and are not self-sustainable in the long run. Keen to change that, the SAGE Foundation identified Panvel as the ideal location for the pilot Rock Your Life SAGE Village. The concept for the village is education and sustainability, and it will have the following components:
A) A well-built school that will provide quality education for a range of ages (from pre-school to secondary-level education). In addition to the basic curriculum, such as math and English, the school will also aim to develop students' constructive thinking, creative thinking, design thinking, perceptual thinking, spherical thinking, evolutionary thinking and conceptual thinking.
The SAGE Foundation has a complete template and resources ready to provide the alternative Teacher Training Program. Rock Your Life will be training the teachers on ways to teach children self esteem, communications skills, entrepreneurship, and financial management skills.
Children will be assessed based on their unique nature and strengths. The SAGE Foundation believes that the proactive assessment will create a positive self image, raise the children's confidence level and inspire the need for change within themselves through intrinsic motivation.
B) A craft center will educate parents in a trade so that they have paid employment and could contribute to their children's education financially. Indian handicrafts are known the world over for their rich variety, grace, elegance and skill; yet it accounts for a miniscule portion of the world's handicraft trade. The proposed Institute for Creative Crafts will fulfill the need of quality training for the Indian craft industry. To be located near the school in Panvel, which is home to popular crafts, the institute will train artisans on aspects such as product and design, quality standardization, market research, production tools and techniques, export modalities, business management skills and others. This platform would be also used to facilitate alternate career opportunities for the artisans by helping them in organizing exhibitions, marketing and PR activities.
The college is primarily targeted for the existing artisans and community, children above 16 years of age and women from rural places of India. However, the college is expected to draw students and other learners/enthusiasts from varied fields and different walks of life across India and overseas. Overall the students group is expected to be 75-80 per cent from rural backgrounds and the rest from towns and elite groups. The training is expected to help the artisans and their communities in producing more relevant and better products, and create more opportunities to improve their current economic status.
C) Another important component of our village development plan is the Rock Your Life SAGE tours. Beginning in March 2009, these tours will bring socially-responsible global visitors to the village to work with the villagers, and assist in training and development and social projects such as building of schools and medical centers, repair of buildings, growing gardens, and digging wells. These tours will give the participants an adventure of a life time where they will get to experience the real India and have the ability to give back in many ways. Via this education process much will be done in manifesting the new feel and productivity of the village.
D) The SAGE Foundation will also dedicate resources to ensure that the villages live in a hygienic environment. The SAGE Foundation will ensure that clean water is accessible by all and that sanitary conditions meet acceptable international standards. To do so, SAGE has established a partnership with Tribes of the World, which will raise funds to provide clean drinking water to the villages. Additionally, Asha Tapase, the Secretary General of the All India Panchayat Federation and a core group member of the SAGE Team, has formed a partnership with a Swiss Company to make technology available to the village for generating clean drinking water through a filtration plant, which will work out to a cost of only Rs. 3/- per litre. The Government has also given SAGE the rights to provide drinking water to the villages in Maharashtra.
Additionally, a medical care center will be established in the village so that villagers receive holistic physical and mental health treatment. The center will be fully-equipped to handle common medical needs and will be staffed with doctors, which may be shared between villages. It will also provide families with understandable literature on self care and diet. With the support of one of supporters, Ratna Rane, villagers will be provided nutritional education and on growing herbs that could treat common diseases.
Regular camps for the early detection of cancer will be held with the help of the Cancer Patient's Aid Association (www.cpaaindia.org <http://www.cpaaindia.org>) which has a very ambitious insurance scheme for the villagers as a hedge against medical expenses. Eye checkup camps, cataract surgeries, diabetes and gynecological camps will also be held on a regular basis.
E) The SAGE Foundation, in partnership with other organizations such as PATT Foundation, Times Foundation, and Standard Chartered Bank, will also focus on planting trees, training villagers on horticulture management, and will assist them on distributing products in urban areas. Standard Chartered Bank is providing the funding at the rate of $ 2/- per tree while the PATT Foundation is providing the E Certificates for the Bank's E Clients. Times Foundation is the facilitator that will connect SAGE with NGOs that could assist in tree planting and the nurseries known to Times Foundation will provide the seeds and saplings.
F) The SAGE Foundation has also established a partnership with the Global Dialogue Foundation (GDF), which will be collecting goods in usable form from participating countries and sending them to the village. Goods that the GDF will supply will range from cars, trucks, buses, earth-moving equipment, machineries, televisions, toilets, sinks, taps, water tanks, septic systems, and other general sanitation supplies. The GDF is doing so with the support of the WCA Family of Logistics Network, a US organization whose 2,500 members represent 10% of the world's independent freight forwarders, and will oversee the processing of materials and equipments so that they will arrive their destinations.
G) SAGE is also focusing on microfinance and creating self-help groups to empower women in small scale industries like making pickles, sauces and chutneys, for which ties are being created with organizations like Extraordinary Ones for buying their products. Tailoring of garments has also started, and SAGE is linking with fashion designers to enhance the villagers' skills to a level where their garments could find global markets. So far a pool of 2000 women has been created who are ready to learn and raise funds through micro finance. Companies like Positive Elements are ready to buy our products once they reach their stringent quality standards.
We believe the village will need to operate for 12 months on this basis before we can start to replicate what is being achieved elsewhere in India or throughout the world.