It started with a vision
Old rusting cranes, the NDSM Shipyards, Mongolian Yurt and a big Work Space tent, Sacred fire burning on a barren strip of land just behind good food place ‘Noorderlicht’, on the edge of the water-way ‘t IJ, separating us from the city centre of Amsterdam. That’s where the Embassy of the Earth saw the light. Gathering 40 young people under 40 looking at the sustainable future of the Netherlands. It is June 21st 2009. This very capable and talented group of young people presented their outcome to the Dutch Government and urged Prime Minister Peter Jan Balkenende to commit to a ‘green’ society.
‘We envisioned permanent Embassies of the Earth on all seven
continents. To serve as educational centers and as operational
base camps. Introducing the ‘Embassy’ as a social platform
serving the urgent complex requests concerning relevant,
often ecological issues – such as for climate, water, food,
education, climate/draught, health and more. And to build local
and regional capacity, unleashing the power of community’s
ability to actively adapt to severe challenges – December 2008.’
Opening of the Asian Centre
Forty people have gathered in the Vaigai Hall of the Tata Dhan Academy. Located some 20 miles outside the City of Madurai, Tamil Nadu, in the middle of a rural and nature landscape. Today is the 27th of July, and in the next hour the Asian Centre of the Embassy of the Earth will be opened. In partnership with Dhan Foundation – a Social Enterprise enabling nearly a million of the poorest people in India to build a good life.
Leaders from rural agricultural, coastal tribal fisherman communities are present. Also the water managers are present, a responsibility in these areas, dating from ancient times. After speeches we move outside to do a Tamil Hindu, local tribal and Ojibway Sacred Fire ceremony. The women do a Water Ceremony. Many of the leaders step forward to speak or sing. Beautiful unity. In the end I offer all leaders, starting with Vasi Malai from Dhan, a pouch with coals from the Millemont/COP21 Sacred Fire in December 2015. Then it began to rain.