How we, the students, supported the United Nations SDGs in Bhutan

Posted on Dec 07, 2019 in Student Speak

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It is rightly said that Bhutan is the happiest country in the world. Anyone who enters this paradise is left mesmerised. The experience of indulging in myriad conversations with locals made us realise that the Bhutanese largely prefer happiness over acquisition of material wealth. The Gross National Happiness Index, which was instituted by the former king, acts as the definitive yardstick  that helps the governmental and non-governmental agencies to frame policy and undertake initiatives.

Nestled in the Eastern Himalayas between China and India, the small Buddhist kingdom of Bhutan opened itself to the outside world only in the 1960s. A majority of Bhutan’s population follows Buddhism. In fact, Bhutan is the only place in the world where Vajrayana Buddhism (or Tantric Buddhism) is followed. This small landlocked country is dotted with Buddhist temples and monasteries. The Buddhist ideals have played an instrumental role in shaping the culture of the Bhutanese — besides showing immense respect towards each other, people revere their natural resources keenly.

When we travelled to Bhutan, we were amazed to see its natural environs. The air was fresh and clean. It corroborated the fact that  Bhutan is the only carbon-negative country in the world. Close to 70% of its area is covered by thick green forests. That a nation and its people constantly strive towards environment sustainability served as an inspiration for all of us. In the course of our journey, we also observed that the Bhutanese give immense importance to preserving their cultural heritage.

Bhutan is, therefore, a model nation for proactive initiatives towards environment conservation. During our journey, we visited a local village to observe how the farmers use the technique of tseri farming (or fallow rotation system) to retain soil productivity. It helped us appreciate the human effort that goes into creating Sustainable Communities.The Bhutanese way of living relies heavily on agricultural operations and utilisation of natural resources, but most importantly — with caution and nurture.

Our trip to Bhutan as a part of EdTerra’s International Community Service Program turned out to be a vital and engaging learning experience that none of us will forget. We wish that all students visit Bhutan and undertake the Community Service Program to gain inspiration for a lifetime in just a span of a week.

Team Members: Bhavya, Jiya, Krisha, Tvarita, Tvesha & Vanshika (Lotus Valley International School, Gurugram).

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EdTerra Edventures conducts various other domestic programs for the youth. If you go to school and are under 17 years of age, ask your school to contact us to arrange a visit to your school for an introduction to the “Bhutan: The Mountain Kingdom” and other journeys under EdTerra’s Going Global Program.

For queries call +91-11-48885800 or visit EdTerra Browse Journeys page to know more about the programs we offer to school students. Visit our Facebook page by clicking HERE.

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