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The Growth of a Good-Will Inspiration

Three days ago I was surprised to receive an e-mail with a headline “News from India”. It was sent via the e-mail address of the site of my paintings but it came from a former business partner of my past job at Swiss Red Cross which I have left just a year ago. I wondered how he found my e-mail address for I didn’t have it at the time of leaving the job.

Memories came up when I read the e-mail: 9 years ago I started to build up a media asset management solution for Swiss Red Cross and chose Picturepark, for it offered the best facilities. Furthermore Bruno Jehle, the founder and CEO – the person who now wrote me the e-mail – gave us a very good free support for developing the concept and structure. Soon we discovered that both of us had a love for India with a long-time background. Since his youth, he had been committed to social development activities in India initiated by himself.

I hadn’t heard from him for years when this e-mail arrived, where he sent to some friends a link to a newspaper article in the Deccan Chronicle reporting about the digitization of centuries-old negatives of ancient buildings, tombs and caves in Hyderabad, Bidar and Adilabad, which were in possession of the Department of Archeology and Museums for more than 100 years. Some members of his Indian team, of the bj institute, with its seat in Switzerland (whose founder and CEO he is) and a branch in Secunderabad / Hyderabad had realised this project after a 5 years formation.

I congratulated him for facilitating this valuable project, and he answered that for over 30 years they are now active in Andhra Pradesh, India. At first by committing to fight leprosy and tuberculosis and building up tree nurseries (he had told me before that with the help of mango farms they created a living for a larger number of families; here an aerial view by Google). He mentioned that this place is near Naidupeta, where Sri Mynampati Narasimham was born. (I wondered how he knew about Sri Mynampati Narasimham, Master MN, but then thought, he might have further searched via my links and come to the page about Master MN on the Good-Will site.) They now have reduced their commitment in this area since it is now running by family enterprises. In his e-mail he mentioned that since his 18th year, he had repeatedly met people from the Theosophical movement and that his inspiration for these tree nurseries had to do with the garden of the Theosophical Society (in Adyar).

He further mentioned a second project near Annavaram, West Godavari, the RISDT (Rural India Self Development Trust).
I googled the place and found out that I had just been in Annavaram during my last visit to India last January, when we travelled with Dr. Kumar and the group from Rajahmundry back to Visakhapatnam, and visited a temple there.

The RISDT is a fascinating good-will activity: It is a non-profit public health and development organization serving the most marginalized communities of East Godavari district. It promotes sustainable solutions for public health and human development needs of the marginalized communities and ” envisions a society in which the most marginalized communities have access to their entitlements and opportunities to realize their full potential.” One of the activities grown out of RISDT is Kalpavruksha (Sanskrit for wish-fulfilling tree), an association supporting social, health and agricultural projects in India by organising donations.

All this has grown out of the commitment of Bruno Jehle, who from out of a journey through South India 30 years ago has developed, together with Indian friends, these substantial medical and social care activities.

This e-mail encounter made me ponder upon the strange links of destiny and perceiving a need and focusing on it persistently to create a solution. It is similar with the work of the seed of a tree and of the sprout in the heart of man.

banyan_tree
A huge banyan tree forest in the garden of the Theosophical Society, Adyar

tree_nursery
Aerial view of the tree nursery project, photo (c) Google.

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