Sparrow Sanitation - Leading with common sense

I think consensus is a poor substitute for leadership Charlotte Beers.

With the on-going help of our collaborators, The Possibility Project is dedicated to creating innovative solutions to social problems. Our Sparrow Sanitation program with I-India is aimed at addressing ‘water slavery', where people are denied safe and adequate infrastructure for proper sanitation and hygiene. Water slavery is at the root of many human rights abuses and can be solved. 

I-India can deliver water to the impoverished for only 2 cents a child.

With an estimated 2.5 billion people lacking access to proper sanitation (more than 35% of the world’s population), the statistics may make this human rights abuse feel insurmountable.Scarce and dirty water and lack of proper waste disposal education kill 3.3 million people annually; which includes around 4500 children under the age of 5 daily. While the ‘consensus’ may be that this situation is hopeless, we at The Possibility Project choose to act otherwise. We are actively implementing a sanitation program that reflects ‘inspired leadership’ and the results are game changing!

Deepak  and Tulsi, former street children, nurtured by I-India, leading Sparrow Sanitation.

One of our most exciting projects is the establishment of Sparrow Sanitation with I-India. This is an affordable, 100% biodegradable, energy efficient sanitary pad enterprise that is owned and managed by I-India and their co-workers. Like all social justice issues, sanitary health is a community issue, not a gender, income or cultural specific issue, so we are approaching it holistically. Men and women work alongside each other to solve problems together. We are creating unity within diversity because we have inspired leaders that are willing to move beyond the satus quo. 

The proud leaders! Boxes of low cost, compostable sanitary pads ready for delivery. 

If we are to really transform our problems, not just re-package them, we must lead with a sense of ‘relatedness’ towards each other. Inspired leaders accept the power of this relatedness or common sense. Inspired leaders also know that using common sense is not the same as using consensus to solve problems, because true change is going to challenge conventional thinking. Solutions have to unite people, there is no real social justice if one group is elevated at the expense of another. What we have in common is our ability to respond to our problems creatively. Inspired leaders believe that regardless of income, age, gender, ethnicity, and circumstance, everyone has what it takes to create what is needed. 

The above are financial breakdowns for our sanitary pad enterprise, when viewed through ‘common sense’ it demonstrates the power of inspired leadership. These figures were done by Deepak on his training program for Sparrow Sanitation. I-India had rescued the young Deepak from the severe abuses of street life, these notes are a testimony of what individuals are capable of when we all decide to stop believing the ‘consensus’on what might be possible. Most of us get trapped into thinking that our problems, failures and fears can somehow stop us from doing what we want or need to do. Yet our inspired leaders in Jaipur demonstrate quite the contrary, showing us that we all have the potential to create change where it is needed. 

 ‘In matters of the imagination, the most unworthy pieces turn out to be the most creative. The stone that builders reject becomes the cornerstones’ Moore.

The I-India team have opened us to an inspired mindset that creates solutions to our problems using the resources we already have. Deepak and Tulsi, who were once rejected and abandoned children, are now the ‘cornerstone’ of Sparrow Sanitation. They lead many others into an more empowered life. We are grateful to be addressing such an important human rights issue. We wholeheartedly share their leadership insights through all of our engagements and products. Please contact us if you wish to be a part of this inspired project. 

Why the sparrow?

The common house sparrow is incredibly resourceful, building their homes with whatever materials they can find. They remind us that we do not have to be big and beautiful to be worthy, we do not have to have the loudest voice to be heard, the sparrow is always ‘actively’ working towards well-being, and they derive power and protection by their numbers. In so many ways this common bird represents the spirit of the incredible human beings that live below poverty line and in conditions that no human being should. Her lesson is to use ‘creativity’ to get around in life. We hope to share these lessons with many, to solve our common problems.

1 comment

  • Jill Healy-Quintard

    I love what you do, your story and how you ‘just do it’. I spent a short time in India a few years back and wanted to be involved in making a difference to the lives of women and children. Life continued here with my family life and working my own business, but I still have this feeling I need to do more. How can I help or be involved? I am in Manly, Sydney and run Body and Balance which is fitness and wellness for the general public, as well as in schools. I have just had the go ahead to be the first teacher to train the school teachers in YogaPilates Fusion and Yoga Nidra for the wellbeing of Staff and Students. This has taken 30+ years to be approved, as I was once seen as a bit of a witch! I do persevere, so if there is someway I can help your projects I would love to be involved.

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