Our earth nurtures all living beings. It provides us with life-supporting resources and it is our responsibility to protect it from any further damage caused by ungrateful and unaware humans.
Dr S. Dharma Neethi founded the Earth Trust intending to concentrate on environmental and traditional health issues with a special focus on sustainable development. The trust wants to ensure that a safe and healthy Earth is passed on to the future generation. To attain this objective, they strive to bring radical changes in the field of agriculture, medicine and environmental practices.
With a vision to protect land and water bodies from further depletion, Earth Trust promotes the usage of recyclable cloth bags and eco- friendly materials. They have established water harvesting systems to increase the groundwater levels and the teams educate farmers and the general public on the usage and importance of such systems. The trust also aims to construct eco-san toilets to discourage open defecation.
Another objective of the trust is to bring back and promote Indian traditional medicines and treatments like Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha, Yoga, Naturopathy, Homeopathy and Acupuncture. They train people to prepare home remedies through herbal kitchen gardens for leading a healthy life. In order to support this vision, they offer diploma courses to rural health providers and have also set up wellness centres.
Earth Trust promotes integrated agriculture and multiple crop farming which is organic in nature by using cattle population at large instead of chemical fertilizers. They establish Farmer Producer Organisations for training, networking and spreading awareness about farmer-friendly government welfare schemes to make agriculture a profitable business in the future.
By implementing these environment-friendly steps, the trust hopes to create a sustainable society which can provide for the coming generations.
Earth Trust is the outcome of its founder, Mr Dharma Neethi’s longtime dream to implement health and environment development projects to give back to society. A highly experienced individual in the field of rural development and NGO management, Mr Dharma Neethi is also the founder of another organisation called Women’s Emancipation and Development Trust. He strongly believed that Men and Women are different but equal. He worked tirelessly towards women empowerment and gender equity for 25 years. He attended various training sessions and resource mobilisation workshops held at Sri Lanka to acquire and polish the necessary skills for developing successful projects. Coming from a traditional farming family and being much involved in the same, he gained reasonably good knowledge in Integrated Farming, Farmer Producer Organization and Export business. He earned diplomas in acupuncture and electro homoeopathy to be able to contribute to the health sector. A master in programme planning & implementation, Mr Dharma Neethi was bestowed with the ‘Bharathi Puraskar’ Award for best social worker in 2004 by Bharathi Yuva Kendra and was also honoured by the Best Social Worker Award by People of Gandhi Nagar village in 2008. A man of several talents, he is also a good singer and a Guinness Book of World Records holder for partaking in non-stop cultural performances of 57 hours with ""Thisaigal"" Cultural Troupe in July 1999. The Earth Trust aims to achieve milestones with their participatory approach under the able leadership of Mr Dharma Neethi.
Sivanammal is a 63-year-old woman residing in Mettupatti village, Tamil Nadu. She was married off at the tender age of 15. Her life has not been easy. One after the other, curveballs were thrown her way, but she refused to get hit. Her husband, unfortunately, passed away just 9 years after their marriage. She was left alone to fend for herself and her 3 small children, two sons and a daughter.
She wiped her tears and got ready for the world that was in front of her. She worked as a daily wage labourer to make ends meet and protect her family. It was a huge struggle, but somehow she managed to provide all her children with primary education up to the 10th standard. All her children eventually got married, and her elder son also had 3 children. This, sadly, was not the end of her hardships. A few years ago, her elder son passed away, leaving Sivanammal with 3 young souls to take care of.
Old age and lack of an income source created difficulties for her. Upon knowing about her situation, EARTH Trust stepped up to the occasion and provided her with 2 goats. Sivanammal used the income generated from those goats to take care of her grandchildren. Today, she owns a total of 4 goats and is leading a peaceful life. She expressed her deep gratitude towards the trust for their compassion, support and help.