Introduction-The Cradle Ark and the concept of “permaculture”.
As the concept of the Cradle Ark develops and as the Lord guides us, the question arises as to does this project meet some/all of the principles of permaculture”(without being drawn into the possible perceived negative spiritual connotations of “earth worship” or New Age thinking that can sometimes be attributed to the permaculture approach and the associated arguments) as “the basics” of permaculture appeal to our thinking and as a current “buzzword” , some sort of fit could result in more interest in our project and possibly assist others following permaculture with some of the ideas that we have and any of the successes we achieve.
Thus for our own better understanding of permaculture , we have looked at the definition (below) as well as the 12 Principles of Permaculture by David Holmgren, and where possible tried to see our ‘fit or alternatively “permaculture’s fit” with the Cradle Ark project.
The motivation for our project has been to follow the Lord’s instruction and help those at the Cradle Ark initially , then the broader surrounding community with an emphasis on The Cradle of Hope and it’s associated NGO’s /PBO’s and then the greater South Africa (or any other part of the Lord’s kingdom) thereafter, should the Lord so will it. In doing so, we hope not only to help the specific Cradle Ark community but many more communities when we get an established, effective, self-sustaining model up and running. There have been other, specific criteria/problems/shortcomings which also have been influential in the way we have tackled the project. Some of these would be applicable to any dry climate and some specific to South Africa.
These would include a general lack of water, a lack of available funding, the “entitlement culture”, lack of hope, lack of jobs, lack of available land, misuse and mistreatment of resources through pollution and littering , the lack of food with emphasis on protein , lack of housing, the problem with rural toilets and the inherent dangers to smaller children, the lack of proper education, the lack of a reliable electricity supply , racial mistrust and language barriers. These are all issues we are trying to address in an efficient and sustainable nature. We are happy to use and try whatever ideas we come across, to test them and see how useful they are in meeting the needs of the community. As part of the ethos of the project and as part of a uniquely South African answer to our own problems we are very much in favour of utilising specific South African resources and solutions where possible.