As a tiny mountain hamlet at 8500 feet above sea level, Shilaroo would have gone unnoticed had it not been for the construction of the multi-purpose stadium, the Netaji Subhash High Altitude Training Centre by the Sports Authority of India, in 2010. The stadium has a synthetic hockey turf, rumored to be the highest in the world, and it is this stadium which has saved Shilaroo from anonymity.
With a population of only a few hundred, the community of Shilaroo is close-knit. The simple, honest and kind village folk participate wholeheartedly in each other’s happenings. Even as the Shilaroo Project was taking shape, the loving community at Shilaroo was always keen to assist us in all kinds of ways and we realized how the project was becoming from a family affair into a community one. This mutually loving and beneficial alliance with the community increased the scope and reach of TSP and hence the first program of the project would evidently be for the celebration of this eternal alliance of the community with TSP.
The first community program at TSP imparted the people with some simple yoga practices, followed by a light meal and ended with an informal discussion about progressive and natural farming techniques and other ideas to advance the condition of the agricultural community of Shilaroo.
This community interaction at TSP will be a regular feature and we are hopeful many fruitful endeavors will emerge from this interaction.
The second community initiative of the project took place in collaboration with the Skill India Mission(PMKK) offered by Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, taken up by Mr. and Mrs. Shariff in Shimla district.
On the occasion of the 4th international day yoga 21st June 2018, a set of very simple yet powerful Isha yoga practices were offered to the students of the PMKK, Shimla and some other guests. The event was attended by close to 40 participants and was very well received.
As part of the continuing community initiatives, TSP is looking forward to working with women’s self-help groups to help in the production and promotion of local craftsmanship and produce. We met with The Pradhan (locally-elected village council head) of our village Shilaroo, Mrs. Amita Dogra, with whom we have drawn up a plan to work with 9 SHGs ( Self-help Group, nearly 45 local village women), where we would be focusing on training in pottery and yoga, other than empowering them to be financially self-sustainable.