"You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete"
"The new paradigm may be called a holistic world view, seeing the world as an integrated whole rather than a dissociated collection of parts. It may also be called an ecological view, if the term "ecological" is used in a much broader and deeper sense than usual. Deep ecological awareness recognizes the fundamental interdependence of all phenomena and the fact that, as individuals and societies we are all embedded in (and ultimately dependent on) the cyclical process of nature."
- Fritjof Capra, Systems Theorist and Founder of the Center for Ecoliteracy
A Holistic Response to Typhoon Haiyan
On the morning of 8 November, category 5 Typhoon Haiyan (locally known as Yolanda) made a direct hit on the Philippines, a densely populated country of 92 million people, devastating areas in 36 provinces. Haiyan is possibly the most powerful storm ever recorded. The typhoon first made landfall at Guiuan, Eastern Samar province, with wind speeds of 235 km/h and gusts of 275 km/h. Rain fell at rates of up to 30 mm per hour and massive storm surges up to six metres high hit Leyte and Samar islands. Many cities and towns experienced widespread destruction, with as much as 90 per cent of housing destroyed in some areas. Roads are blocked, and airports and seaports impaired; heavy ships have been thrown inland. Water supply and power are cut; much of the food stocks and other goods are destroyed; many health facilities are not functioning and medical supplies are quickly being exhausted.
Together with partners Global Ecovillage Network Oceania and Asia, Maia Earth Village, Green Releaf Initiative, Permaculture Aid Yolanda, and the ABS CBN Foundation, we hope to assist in co-creating a new Leyte through the Earth Village Project, one that's not just climate adaptive, but one that's holistic based on ecovillage and permaculture design principles tapping from the innate capacity and wisdom of the community to become resilient while in natural flow and attunement to nature's design and process.
Permaculture is a holistic framework and design science for providing natural and sustainable solutions to all aspects of human needs, and the needs of the planet. An Ecovillage Design is a process that empowers individuals and communities with the knowledge for shaping their worlds and becoming more self-reliant. An ecovillage is an intentional or traditional community using local participatory processes to holistically integrate ecological, economic, social, and cultural dimensions of sustainability in order to regenerate social and natural environments.
[Photos by Helena Dusseljee]
[Diagrams from Permaculture and Ecovillage Design sites via Google.com]
In the spirit of a gift economy, your donation supports my work in integrating psycho - social support handles in ecovillage and permaculture design responses using personal and community art making. It will also support my contribution in helping shape the training and modules with key resource persons and the community. Funds will go to travel, supplies, and upgrade and maintenance of multi-media equipment to be used (camera and laptop). Currently, my smartphone is broken after being flooded in my tent during heavy rain. A donated pre-loved phone with 3G functions would be essential to document and share the work from the ground.
The Earth Village Project
I helped translate this Earth Village Mandala based on disaster response and rehabilitation inspired by the Maia Mandala's rainbow colors, the ecovillage design of Maia Earth Village co-designed by Pi Villaraza and Juanita Naidoo. The logo is designed by Katrina Tan Conte.
Here in Leyte, I am working with Pi Villaraza (the founder of Maia Earth Village where I live in) of the Global Ecovillage Network and friends from Permaculture Aid Yolanda along with their networks and volunteers, in developing and designing The Earth Village Project, a whole systems response to crisis that reminds us of our deep relationship with the earth as community.
Co-journeying with stakeholders affected by disaster, we hope to co-create closed loop systems that support food security, health and well-being, sustainable housing and even rebuilding a damaged school into an “earth school.”
Through a team of local and global experts and volunteers, the project hopes to share earth based energy management principles designed on a regenerative approach that addresses care for the people, care for the earth, and allows fair share of resources.
Using ecovillage and permaculture design and application process, the project hopes to assist communities affected to rehabilitate and rebuild mindful of the carbon footprints that caused the disaster in the first place.
Throughout the stages of response, relief, rehabilitation, rebuilding, and prevention, support is designed based on how nature works with the innate wisdom of the community in terms of their resilient capacities to move as victims into survivors and hopefully shift as survivors into thrivers.
Changing the Story from