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What does Forest Voices of India actually do?

Forest Voices of India is a U.S.- based 501 C 3 organization that helps support four charities in India…

A young boy is enchanted by a blue butterfly and by the tall trees he walks among, along with his classmates on a nature outing into the forest. They do a detailed study of the eco-system. Twenty years later, as a successful businessman, he avoids making investments that might harm the wilderness. Instead, he looks for ways to invest that will build eco-friendly environments to restore nature. In the back of his mind – always – he remembers the blue-winged butterfly.

A young woman from a disadvantaged background has not been able to finish school. It’s difficult to find a job and she feels at loose ends until she takes a handicrafts workshop which teaches how to make delightful objects out of environmentally friendly, natural materials. She is also taught how to start a business selling handicrafts. Happy making lovely objects – she looks to a brighter future ahead.

Along with a group of her peers, a middle-aged woman has been taught how to start her own business. No longer feeling trapped sitting at home, she has some extra money now to help support her family, and she feels a renewed sense of purpose – along with a sense of peace.

These and many other programs run by the Ramaswami Foundation (the C.P. Ramaswami Aiyar Foundation) and their sister organization – the C.P. Ramaswami Environmental Education Centre — bring about dramatic changes in people’s lives. They reach tens of thousands of people in six different states in south India – not just bringing a sense of fulfilment to individual people but transforming people’s relationship with the natural world – bringing life to both people and the earth.

Over the past thirty years or so, the Ramaswami Foundation has restored 53 sacred groves – small forests. These vary in size from just a couple of acres to two or three hundred acres. Each is closely connected traditionally with a nearby village…

To be continued…

Photos:
C.P. Ramaswami Aiyar Foundation and the C.P. Environmental Education Centre

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If you saw Cleo getting her chin scratched on a soft couch today, you’d never guess where her story began.

It was a starless night when Blue Cross of India first discovered her.

Her beady eyes surveyed the new surroundings. Alone under the night sky, tucked inside a wet cardboard box on the lonely road, she didn’t dare to stir, the thudding of her heart echoing in her ears. Was this really happening, or was her brain playing cruel tricks on her?

Minutes turned into hours without any sign of her beloved human coming to take her back – fear and confusion overpowered her.

Cleo left out a soft purr that sounded like a “Why?”

After what felt like infinite time, the sun’s soft rays filtered through the nearly bare branches, and she was startled to meet a pair of eyes that reflected her own surprise!

The flutter of hope took a U turn when she realized that the pair did not belong to her familiar person, and fear gripped her heart. But that pair of eyes stared back at her with something familiar, something she thought she’d lost forever, that she ached for – something that felt like love.

The human stepped near, and Cleo’s defense kicked in, but she was too exhausted and traumatized to escape the approaching hands. She let herself be carried out of the flimsy box. A pair of soothingly protective arms wrapped her trembling body covered with fleas. Cleo clung to them, wishing away the worst of her days.

And you know what? The wonderful days that followed Cleo’s abandonment proved that wishes do come true! Because she had just been rescued into the arms of Blue Cross. She was immediately treated and cared for, body and soul.

While one Blue Cross team was doing a splendid job of nourishing and showering her with all the love in the world, the other team had been appealing to the world to give Cleo her the forever loving and responsible home that she deserves.

After just a few days, a lovely human named Rebecca reached out to Blue Cross to adopt and take her to her loving home. Well, who could resist this adorable snowy bundle of curiosity and innocent fun?

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