SDET

Email Address

swamidayanandaeducationaltrust@gmail.com

Phone Number

+91 4366 260300

Our Location

Manjakkudi, Tamil Nadu

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Our Supporters

Our mission to create a rural integrated programme in Manjakkudi has been enabled by the generous support of our long-term partners. Their contributions are invaluable in helping us sow the seeds for a better tomorrow.

Sustainable Living

The world today is faced with the pressing need to preserve the available natural resources and put in place a system for sustainable growth and development. Even as we tackle issues such as land degradation, loss of bio-diversity and erosion of natural resources, we run the risk of losing out on traditional methods of agriculture and farming, which have respect for nature at their core, as we race to adopt modern technology.

The Swami Dayananda Educational Trust has created in Manjakkudi a sustainable natural ecosystem wherein each element reinforces and supports the other. Through the Swami Dayananda Farms, we have helped revive traditional agricultural methods and given farmers a regular means of livelihood – added reason to carry on their traditional occupation.

By establishing the Swami Dayananda Goshala, we have helped create a platform for breeding of indigenous cows and the sustenance of a thriving dairy industry. Moreover, the crops on the farm are nourished by the products and by-products from the goshala – a far better alternative to chemical fertilizers and pesticides. Dayavanam and Herb Garden are pockets of greenery that help to reverse the effect of our carbon footprint. The Herb Garden, a half-acre space dedicated to rearing plants of medicinal value, is a space where we rear herbs used in home remedies and ayurvedic preparations – an active means of preserving precious knowledge for posterity.

Swami Dayananda Farms

Around 50 acres of land have been developed by SDET for the conservation and cultivation of heritage rice varieties and propagation of organic farming practices. Around seeds of 289 varieties of heritage rice from across 15 states in India, and from Bangladesh and Mynamar have been carefully sourced, conserved and grown in the Swami Dayananda Farms. These include Ajara Ghansal(Maharashtra), Gobinda Bhog (West Bengal), Karuppu Kavuni (Tamil Nadu), Kon Joha (Assam), Mansur (Bihar), Sukhadas (Uttar Pradesh), Laicha (Madhya Pradesh) Samunchini (Chhatisgarh)and Bakul Phool (Orissa). The seeds are grown through line farming or growbags, and around 10 acres of land has been earmarked exclusively for seed conservation efforts. The entire process – sowing, harvesting, threshing and removal or husk – is done by hand to ensure that the seeds are protected and importantly, don’t get mixed up. A portion of these seeds are shared with farmers, so that they can create an ongoing cycle of sowing and harvesting. This will help keep up the cycle of seed conservation andcontinued propagation of these heritage varieties. The remaining land is used to grow organic rice varieties for retail at our immersion centre in Chennai called Spirit of the Earth. Given that local farmers are growing heritage rice varieties from Tamil Nadu, Swami Dayananda Farms concentrates more on cultivating heritage rice varieties from other states of India.

Spirit of The Earth

The rice grown at the Swami Dayananda Farms is retailed through Spirit of the Earth (SOTE), an immersion centre launched by AIM for Seva in July 2017. Spirit Of The Earth believes that the planet's resources are not merely a source for our consumption and personal gratification; like the Earth, people need to learn to share (vibhakthi), to give in abundance (vriddhi), provide nutrition (vrihi) and be compassionate (daya) – to render harmony in society. In line with that a series of talks and discussions are conducted throughout the year.

Farmer Training Programme

The annual farmer training programme in Manjakkudi has seen an encouraging response. As part of the training, an agricultural expert is invited periodically to talk on topics and best practices related to organic farming. The last few training sessions are designed as practical sessions, where the farmers learn to make their own compost and manure. When the programme concludes, farmers are encouraged to cultivate heritage rice varieties using organic farming practices. SDET helps to oversee their efforts, and supports them all through the season. In addition, when they harvest their grain, SDET helps them find markets for their produce.

Dayavanam

Located in the village Manjakkudi in Tamil Nadu, Dayavanam is a forest garden created by Swami Dayananda Educational Trust. Spread over five acres, it consists of 23 varieties of fruit and nut trees, an array of flowering plants, shrubs, herbs, vines and perennial vegetables. Over 80% of the plants in this forest garden are edible, or useful in many other ways.

Carefully designed, the trees are planted in such a way that the plants benefit each other as they would in a natural woodland. The canopy layer of trees protect shade loving plants, and lower growing plants and nitrogen fixing plants also find a place at Dayavanam. The forest atmosphere attracts, birds, insects and microorganisms which thrive in this garden. Cared for by the garden team of the Trust, Dayavanam is a soulful three dimensional forest garden, where one learns the importance of sustainability and discovers a rich oasis of bio diversity.

Herb Garden

The Herb Garden, a half-acre space dedicated to rearing plants of medicinal value, is located next to the Dayavanam. There are currently 1030 herbal plants grown here from 39 varieties of medicinal plants, and they are typically used for home remedies and ayurvedic medicines. It is imperative that we preserve this knowledge for posterity. The local community continues to buy the herbs to treat common ailments such as cold and fever. The varieties of herbs grown here include Brahmi, Semparathi, Notchi, Amman Pacharisi, Vellai Karisalankanni, Kuppaimeni, Vellarukku, Naaiveli, Omavalli, Thulasi and Vembu among others.

Swami Dayananda Goshala

The Swami Dayananda Goshala was set up in 2012 to preserve and propagate indigenous breeds of cows. The goshala, spread over 1 acre, has spacious sheds that are well ventilated and fitted with fans to ensure that the cows are comfortable. There are 86 cows (of which 18 are milch cows) in our goshala. This includes 18 calves that were born in our goshala in the last year. The indigenous breeds raised here include Gir (Gujarat), Tharpakar, Sahiwal, Red Sindhi (Punjab), and Punganur (Andhra Pradesh), Rathi (Gujarat). The cows are taken for grazing and given high-quality, all-natural feed. They are also given regular vaccinations. Machines have been installed for cleaning the floor and washing the cows. SDET practices an efficient cattle management system, which begins with well-planned and adequate housing for the cattle. The goshala includes feed storage, hay stacks and manure pits. Machines have been installed for cleaning the floor and washing the cows. There is sufficient space per cow, and abundant supply of fresh, clean water and 6 acres of grass for grazing. A natural feed made at the goshala is administered to all cattle, and they are also given regular vaccinations. Every day, the milk yield is given to the local co-operative, village temple and houses in the agraharam.