The commemorative dream project was formally launched on December 15, 2015 in the colourful presence of the Menchari community, Orgong Gup & his team, SJI & 11 interns from Gaeddu College of Business Studies (9) & College of Natural Resources (2), Lobesa & guests from financial institutions. It was graced by Denzhong Rinpoche, a revered Lama in Orong Gewog who is playing a significant role in bringing about social change in the Gewog, in particular alcoholism.
A model village? What does it entail? In essence it is about ensuring people’s health –physical, mental, emotional and spiritual, social and ecological harmony, empowering people economically and politically to enable them to make mindful choices of their lives for sustained and collective wellbeing. In simple practical terms, it is about nutrition & sanitation, familial and communal harmony, of sharing and loving, effective engagement, self-reliance, preserving local knowledge & skills and internalizing values of contentment, cause & effect, loyalty & trust, interdependence, etc. among others.
The community, local government led by the Gup and SJI & its team of interns discussed issues and implementation plan of activities. The biggest challenge will be creating the “model village” consciousness in the community & other actors, without which all activities & their implementation will be no different from any other development plan implemented by the sectors. Against the strong force of materialism and aggressive income generation drive, it may fail but it is worth trying! It will demand great wisdom & skillful methods!