Enriched  by  the  perspectives  assimilated  during  a  2.5  year  journey  across  rural  India, ProtoVillage  was  founded  in  the  August  of  2010  to  co-create  the  prototype  of  a Resilient  rural  community  in  a  remote  village  called  Tekulodu  in  the  second  driest  and one  of  the  poorest  districts  in  India  (Anantapur  district,  Andhra  Pradesh)  where  evensubsistence farming in on the edge of collapse.

 

During  the  first  year  in  the  village,  the  focus  of  the  team  was  to  observe  and  learn  the ways of life in the village and also to find any opportunities to be useful. We worked on drinking  water  de-fluoridation  and  afforestation  among  other  things  in  the  first  year, besides  making  over  300  friends  in  the  village!  The  first  year  also  taught  the  team  that villagers   found   it   easier   to   adapt   to   changes   that   are   demonstrated   rather   than preached.

So the ProtoVillage team chose to focus on one single farm in the Tekulodu village and turn it into the prototype of an Resilient family. The farm family, with an annual income of  INR  7,000  ($  150)  was  about  to  migrate  out  of  the  village  for  lack  of  opportunities.

Working  with  the  farm  family,  the  team  have  been  able  to  ensure  that  the  family  earns INR  14,000  per  month  besides  becoming  self-reliant  in  terms  of  its  most  basic  needs .

 

The  experience  enriched  the  team  with  perspectives  on  rural  life  in  this  part  of  the world,  it  taught  them  the  essentiality  of  Interdependence  –  It  is  only  when  individual families  establish  traditions  of  respectful  interdependence  that  the  community  as  a whole can enjoy Resilience.

ProtoVillage  has  since  purchased  12.5  acres  of  land  within  the  same  village  cluster towards  the  development  of  a  role  model  rural  community  –  a  centre  for  learning, practice  and  dissemination  of  knowledge  on  how  any  community  in  this  region  canorganize itself for Resilience.