Sherrie: Greatest Thanks!/Andrius: please moderate yourself in this forum
Dear Sherrie, Andrius, Peter, and All,
I very much appreciate Sherrie's response, and I personally would like to work with you on developing some mechanisms where we might be helpful in a more structured way, Sherrie. Generally, our fundraising here has been personally-linked, on a small-scale and individual to individual. During our peace-related activities, we did raise more funds and operated on a larger scale than usual: Andrius did keep an accurate of all that, which is in the public domain.
I'm not sure about how to proceed to discuss what you suggest, Sherrie: do we do that as Holistic Helping, which will necessitate discussions about setting us up as an independent entity, or do we discuss this in the context of Minciu Sodas, which will necessitate a wide-ranging discussion about many issues, including the possibility of developing an overall "culture."
There will need to be some discussion with Andrius about how he wants to proceed now regarding individual forums. We have discussed (he and I) sub-cultures--Holistic Helping being one--as independent entities to a degree, in that those who head each group can conduct their own sub-group according to their own values.
I would like to work within Minciu Sodas, if possible, but there are major issues and concerns I have with doing so, among them with Andrius himself.
Andrius, no less a personage than the wise and loving Sister Wendy has said that guilt is actually the wasted emotion. Rather than asking someone to feel "guilty," how much better to ask that they feel "contrite" (shame can actually lead to this contrition, so it may be a more helpful emotion and reaction), for therein lies true behavior change, and the path to transformation.
I believe I understand some of your reactions/emotions in this situation because I, too, have been in a similar position repeatedly, and it is one of the reasons I am burned out now.
But I am also very upset by your approach and behavior in this situation, and to me this connects to why we are not moving forward with culture-building. In this forum, please do not post publicly a private letter written too you alone, without permission of the author. Please also refrain from unkind and self-righteous remarks. Your own character "challenges"--I do not want to describe them as "faults," more as "opportunities" for learning and change--should lead to more moderation on your part.
If you are serious that this is "my" sub-culture and forum, please do observe some basic courtesies and respect for others. This email thread is deeply offensive to me, and it is not at all in the spirit of "holistic helping." I love you as a friend, and have huge respect for what you--and all of us together--have achieved. But in my view we cannot and will not move forward together with this type of reaction and interaction.
Thanks and greatest blessings, Janet
From: Sherrie Noble
Sent: Aug 25, 2010 1:56 PM
Subject: RE: [holistichelping] Re: Peter, when will you repay me the loan?
Your wisdom and kindness are part of the reason I have stayed at the least attentive to what has been happening here. Your expertise with technology and global reach are also unusual and very good/important. I will ask you to look at my last post however and consider the necessity to bring some funding in to the work in a more organized manner, with the usual international standards assumed and met. It is very possible and you might find you have greater successes, and even less stress, once an organization is in place to support and assist in the work you do in such very original and good ways. Responsible stewardship is always noted, it is appropriate and ignoring what is possible not overall responsible guidance. There are learning curves in everything, of course.
I will be at Harvard tomorrow, perhaps meeting some of the people you know from Berkman where we met. Last I heard you are in the US. If so, for how long, and is there any way for us to possibly connect if you are interested in some strategizing? Might you be in the Boston area, now or soon? You can reach me at SherrieNoble@... for direct contact, perhaps just for planning, without taking time or bandwidth here on the list.
All the best to you, and to everyone here—the work underway awes and inspires me and always has.
From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com] On Behalf Of ms@...
Sent: Wednesday, August 25, 2010 1:37 PM
To: peter ongele
Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com
Subject: [holistichelping] Re: Peter, when will you repay me the loan?
Peter, I share your letter. Thank you.
I understand why you should feel ashamed when others see that you
write private letters to me - when I work with you exclusively in the
public - and you are prompt in asking me for more money, but quiet as
to how you will pay me what you owe me.
Peter, I believe that shame is a sin. Please, don't feel ashamed,
feel guilty. Don't care for what other people would have you feel,
but develop your own capacity for self-correction. Please don't rely
on me or others to humiliate you. Why should we waste energy to
address your character faults? If you do need help with them, please
Quoting peter ongele <peterongele@...>:
> Dear Andrius,
> You surely helped me to further my education, which I managed to
> finish last year. I owe you respect because you have made up my
> dream and now with the skills I can manage community development
> innovate projects.
> Despite the above, I've felt humulated, public character
> deformation,ashamed of myself...I could as well post this to
> mendenyo yahoogroups, but you have chosen to do that without my
> permission. I believe as well that am still your servant for I owe
> you the money of which Godly willing will pay back. I've not
> forgotten, ones I would be able to pay back, I'll send you your
> money. By the way thank you for all that you have done to me and
> the community at large. Be blessed.
> NB..If you like you can send this also.
> --- On Wed, 8/25/10, ms@... <ms@...>
> From: ms@... <ms@...>
> Subject: Peter, when will you repay me the loan?
> To: "peter ongele" <peterongele@...>
> Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
> Date: Wednesday, August 25, 2010, 8:06 AM
> Peter Ongele,
> Thank you for writing and being in touch.
> In the summer of 2008, you asked for my help so that you could earn a
> certificate which would allow you to earn at a higher rate. I gave you
> $100 in work and $100 in a no-interest loan which you said that you would
> repay one year later.
> What are your plans to repay me?
> I don't have any new resources for you.
> As usual, I share our letters publicly.
> Andrius Kulikauskas
> Minciu Sodas
>> I'm very sorry to come back to you, its shame on me except that
>> nothing I can do. During MS and mendenyo online communications on
>> different projects which could be potential to our community, I resolved
>> to two major projects which has shown good ground work in the community.
>> 1: Awareness on malaria and bed net use, which we had bed net
>> survey....distribution, transparency, visibility and malaria surveilance.
>> This work has played a great roll in the community and now up to develop
>> malaria community analytics...which I still follow with Peter Burgess. Had
>> represented this work to district level through power point, which is
>> 2: I got interested on Biochar
> farming...Sorry for the lastest up date, this might have happened due
>> your busy shedules to respond to my letters. I remember sending our first
>> year report on biochar trial in the soil...I designed the experiment for
>> three years. This year is second year. Last year got support from a
>> certain lady from Australia, and this year she has been unwell and not
>> been able to support us fully. Yes, I've received a part of the money but
>> we have still lucked some given amount to accomplish the writing of the
>> report. We are less with Ksh 9000. Its shame on me to request this
>> support, but am on the wall with this report. I've collected the data...I
>> less paid the volunteers with Ksh 4000 and 5000 to a senior scientist who
>> is to help me anaylze the data and first report editing. Remember this is
>> your product effort to elevet our community.
>> Below is the concept
> of this work:
>> SUBA SMALL
>> HOLDER FARMERS BIOCHAR COMMUNITY PROJECT
>> Declining soil
>> fertility due to poor nutrient management is a major constraint to crop
>> production in Suba District extending to other parts of lake region of
>> Western Kenya . Cover crops, mulches, compost or manure additions
>> has been used successfully by few, supplying nutrients to crops supporting
>> rapid nutrient cycling through microbial
>> biomass. However, such benefits of soil amendments are short lived to
>> the small holder farmers (Jeckinson and Ayanaba 1977); thus inorganic
>> soil amendments have to be applied each year to
>> sustain soil productivity (Bol. Et al, 2000). All along, Suba District has
> never had clear soil management policies and it is for this reason that
>> Biochar farmers group have taken the initiative through Farmers
>> Research Approach (FPRA) of Biochar farming practice. Moreover, this helps
>> small holder farmers, to understand farming method, identify farming
>> analyze soil fertility management options and evaluate Biochar technology
>> option of soil management. In the long run, the goal is to establish the
>> option that can overcome some of the limitations experienced in soil
>> as well provide more additional ones.
>> If FPRA can be
>> easy adopted then that will be a gateway for greater involvement of small
>> holder farmers in the Biochar trial technology evaluation and
>> program. In turn, the farmers will
> be easily empowered to overcome
>> socio-economic constrains at the farm level which greatly limit
>> the adoption of major soil management technologies. Fundamental goals of
>> FPRA includes
>> farmer self diagnosis, respect for the capability of individual farmer?s
>> produce and analyzed knowledge,
>> commitment by researchers to involve the community and the recognition
>> research is an educational process for researchers and the community. FPRA
>> empowers or expands the farmers indigenous technical knowledge and
>> capacity to
>> learn in order to adapt and deliver better in transition of research
>> The Biochar trial started by placing great
>> emphasis to local farmers to solve the rapid declining soil fertility in
>> own capacity and help address the hunger
>> disaster in
> the region since the decline is largely caused by continuous
>> practice of the same traditional farming system in every planting season.
>> pressure for decline is further generated by increased human population,
>> climate change and increasing costs of organic fertilizers. It is
>> that farmers have taken a step and are actively involved in the biochar
>> trials and have evaluated the Biochar
>> soil management productivity. This has
>> encouraged holistic review of constrains in Biochar application soil
>> by including farmers opinions. In this
>> regards, farmers are directly involved in soil management practices by
>> and evaluating Biochar farm trials-scoring and thereafter rank Biochar?s
>> performance using their own criteria.
>> Biochar is a fine
>> grained charcoal high in organic carbon and highly resistant to
>> decomposition .
>> It is produced from pyrolysis of plant
>> and waste feed stocks. As for soil amendment, Biochar creates a
>> recalcitrant soil carbon pool that is carbon negative, serving as a net
>> withdrawal of atmospheric carbon dioxide
>> stored in a highly recalcitrant
>> soil carbon stocks. From research done by a number of scientists on
>> in other parts of the world, char amended soils have shown significant
>> in frequent fertilizer requirements of every planting seasons, reductions
>> nitrous oxide emissions, reduced run off of phosphorus into surface waters
>> leaching of nitrogen into ground water.
>> It has also shown from previous research that it significantly
>> efficiency and at the same time reduces the need for traditional chemical
>> fertilizers, while greatly enhancing crop yields. Thus Biochar offers
>> for its soil productivity and climate change(Glaser et al 2002).
>> In this first
>> phase( year one) of Biochar project, the technology approach of Farmers
>> Participatory Research has given quick adoption though with diffused
>> result on the adoption. This has been attributed to; limited power to
>> awareness of the technology, income constrains, correct ratio of charcoal
>> to manure application on
>> farms and the famine disaster experienced in the community this year of
>> 2009. However,
>> the project has remained focused to scale up the technology and reach more
>> holder farmers in the community in order to
> enhance food security and
>> poverty among the population..
>> Biochar project
>> in Suba District is endeavoring and taking into account drawbacks from
>> past planting seasons as a yardstick to
>> further improve and continue to develop more initiative, innovative and
>> cost technologies. The project has been reflecting general growth and
>> development to eventual yield at harvest of target crops
>> more so maize has been documented. This synthesis documentated highlights
>> the most likely
>> promising research findings of Biochar soil management success in
>> countries with an aim of identifying gaps for future research. Also the
>> wiould be providing useful insights to the way forward of Biochar projects
>> through farmer participatory research.
>> STUDY AREA: SINDO
>> Project base is in Sindo, Suba District, Western Kenya region. The area
>> is a depression land that
>> stretches up to 20km along the shores of lake Victoria and up to 10km to
>> foot of the hills. To its Northern boarder lies Rang?wa, Gembe and Gwassi
>> The soils in Sindo are generally deficient and marginal. The use of
>> fertilizers (Cover crops, mulches, compost or manure additions) alone has
>> no improvement to correct and balance soil nutrients and sustain crop
>> Moreover, its general application to the farms is time consuming, labor
>> costing, short lived and has to be applied in every planting season.
>> Biochar integrated soil nutrient management has opted to maximize the
>> complimentary effects of organic nutrient sources as an option since
>> holds much
>> promise to enhance low cost crop productivity on small scale farms in the
>> Sindo is divided
>> into two zones; Eastern and Western.
>> Eastern zone is characterized with black sandy soil and Western zone with
>> soil. Biochar performance has been evaluated based on these soil zones.
>> Annually, one or two crops has always been grown in each zone and there
>> been no specific evaluations for various crops cultivated in Sindo to
>> provide a
>> significant component from which Biochar soil trials can be based on to
>> determine its adaptability and acceptability.
>> It has been wonderful and encouraging, as I've been trying to operate
>> things at a low cost level
>> to our community and my income ability.
> In consultations and
>> meetings with the community, it has not been promising to replant in the
>> rains , so many have become reluctant to rely on the weather reports
>> which over years has not been in consistence ( they say this today,
>> tomorrow again they say this, particularly when they see failures of
>> rain). Most people are waiting the long rains of next year.
>> WHAT DO THEY WANT TO DO NOW? Quest for a seperate
>> farm of biochar , fetched, to be irrigated, which would
>> help to develop a standard operation or information on the performance of
>> Biochar for reference to the community. We also want to take this time to
>> learn the low technologies of making biochar without exhausting our
>> forests. We need to make barrels and to try the new technologies out
> We also have a dream to register the project as an NGO.
>> What are the most pressing needs of
>> this community?
>> Poverty is more than the
>> absence of material means or basic services, such as a lack of food,
>> shelter, clean water, education or health. Poverty has created
>> powerlessness to determine the quality of life, and compounds
>> vulnerability when conflict or natural disaster strikes.
>> We believe that most suffering is avoidable,
>> being caused either by
>> direct action of others or indirectly through injustice,
>> inequality, neglect, or environmental and socio-economic
>> Is the proposed project addressing these
>> needs? Although
>> form more than over half the community population, they have been
>> receiving only a small share of development opportunities. Biochar
>> project is giving more balance of project involvement for family
>> supports. Twice as many men as women are directly involved in the work
>> and if women who hold unpaid works
>> as careers for the family and the household income would now be
>> counted as productive in the community and the project would have a
> positive impact on the roll and participation of women in the community
>> Participation by the community in the process:
>> Community is taking good position to identify key problems in biochar
>> farming system. The community is able to plan realitic solutions they
>> have encountered in the last biochar year trial. Carrying out early
>> planning before the next planting season and individually measuring
>> the success they had with biochar application on their farms.
>> Feasibility of the Biochar project for future logistic and
>> financial support. The group to be
> registered as NGO if possible. Creating webpage for
>> global awareness of this group existance and to open gates for future
>> external supports from supportive organizations worldwide.
>> Will the community permanently benefit from the
>> project? This is obviously
>> true, for biochar is the answer to our soil fertility management at
>> per our standard ability for soil managent. We are to benefit the
>> achievement of biochar project for our economic independence in the
>> future as it has shown increament in our crop yields in the last
>> planting season. Collectively, the group is standing better chance of
>> having group control of resources the community might acquire and
>> collective decisions and self
> confidence that this would make
>> difference in the lives in the community.
>> Will the project have a positive impact on the
>> This is
>> something we discussed at length, how might we get to start using low
>> biochar production technology without destroying our forest. This had been
>> worldwide matter of concern and most countries where
>> biochar has taken root well, they use very low technology of making
>> biochar which would be introduced which we desire to adopt. We've lots
>> of info on these, but require money, which we don't have
>> right now at hand but sure if all would go well with us, we would some
>> supports for that.
> These are the major things we hope
>> for implimentations for the success of Biochar in the region.
>> With the above needs,
>> we appeal for support, from organizations for
>> the success of the project. This is what we have at this time. I'm glad
>> that you would be able to help look for us support in any of the items,
>> at least to help establish ourselves in the Biochar Project.
>> Peter Ongele.