ECO-Vrindaban Board Meeting Minutes 06/26/2016

ECO-Vrindaban New Vrindaban

ECO-Vrindaban Board Meeting Minutes 06/26/2016

Mission Statement: ECO-Vrindaban promotes simple living, cow protection, engaging oxen, local agriculture, and above all, loving Krishna, as envisioned by Srila Prabhupada, the Founder-Acharya of ISKCON New Vrindaban.

Participating Directors: Anuttama, Bhima, Chaitanya Mangala, Ranaka and Sri Tulasi Manjari

Participating Advisors: Jaya Krsna, Navin Shyam, Radha-Krishna, Vraja

Participating Managers: Mukunda, Nitaicandra

Recording Secretary: Jamuna Jivani

1. Village Association Liaison

WHEREAS: The ECO-V Board wishes to support the development of a “local self-governing village” in New Vrindaban.

RESOLVED: The Board approves up to $5K to help pay for the cost of hiring a part time Village Association Liaison for one year, under the following terms:

  • INV also commits a matching amount, up to $5K, in order to meet the full $10K request
  • ECO-V receives a report after six months
  • After one year, the pilot program will be reviewed
  • Moving into the second year, the Village Association would be expected to contribute to the Liaison’s salary, up to one third of the total

2. Mukunda’s Monthly Report

Mukunda has reported on the previous month’s projects:

  • Mukunda worked with a crew to clean up the Community Garden and other areas used for Kulimela
  • He has almost finished rebuilding the fence along the edge of the Community Garden that INV took down during construction of the new apartments

3. Nitaicandra’s Monthly Report

Nitaicandra reported on the previous month’s projects:

  • Ox yokes have arrived. Caitanya Bhagavat and Nitaicandra have been working with Hari and Priya for about a week, and they have responded well, even after a long layoff, which Nitaicandra explained is due to the excellent training they previously received.
  • Strawberries have been planted
  • Vegetable starts have been planted out (tomatoes, peppers, okra, kerala, eggplant, and marigolds)
  • Seeds have been directly planted (carrots, beets, radish, squash, beans, herbs, greens, cucumbers, salads, sunflowers, melons and amaranth)
  • Cover crop has been a success so far: cooling the soil, attracting beneficials, discouraging pests, and outgrowing weeds.
  • Heavy mulching has minimized weeding and held moisture during the long dry spells that we have recently experienced.
  • Covering our young fruit trees with netting has protected them from the cicadas
  • Some of our young trees are fruiting for the first time (apple, cherry, peach)
  • Went on an educational paw paw tour with Soma prabhu
  • Regular staff meetings have been going well
  • Electric deer fence is not yet active

Anticipated projects for the upcoming month:

  • An increase in flower production is anticipated and documentation will begin.
  • Berry season is here. We will be collecting cultivated and wild types soon.
  • Preparing and planting our large beds for our grain nursery. This year our grain production is for collecting seed for future use.
  • Our other ox teams will resume their training in the next few weeks.

4. Internal Funding Request: $12K for Two Mowers

WHEREAS: The ECO-V Board wishes to invest in equipment to support its ongoing farming-related projects.

RESOLVED: The Board approves up to $12K for the purchase of a brush hog and lawn mower.

5. Kulimela 2016 Review

Chaitanya Mangala expressed appreciation for the hard work the ECO-V staff contributed to help make it a successful event. The ECO-V members present at the meeting shared their impressions and feedback regarding the event. All thought it was overwhelmingly positive and agreed that New Vrindaban, and particularly INV, was showcased in a way that was well received by festival participants. The organizers reported they are finalizing the financial reports and once ready will provide those to INV & ECO-V as previously promised.

6. Regular ECO-V Staff Meetings

Mukunda reported that staff meetings began approximately one month ago on alternating Fridays from 10:30-11:30 am.  These meetings have been well-attended and are helping to create a more positive culture, as well as provide added support and improved communications between the individuals involved.

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