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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Economic Development, International, International Agricultural Development, International Relief, Urban & Community Economic Development

Mission: The primary purpose of the Hummingbird Project is to create sustainable systems using permaculture principles that enhance and benefit communities by educating and empowering individuals to improve quality of life and foster stewardship of the earth.

Results: In 2012, THP presented on the ‘Living Soil’ to over 1,000 farmers, trainers, students and government officials about the life in the soil and organic farming methods in 6 different states across India. THP provided the supplies and training to establish 2 soil microbiology labs in India and 1 lab in Thailand, each continue to be a training resource for farmers. THP has collaborations with 5 separate Indian NGOs and in October 2013, trained over 500 farmers in villages around Lucknow and Varanasi.

Target demographics: subsistence farmers

Direct beneficiaries per year: train over 1,000 rural Indian farmers on how to transition from chemical to organic farming

Geographic areas served: India

Programs: THP is an all volunteer non-profit organization that is working for social justice through ecological regeneration. The 'Living Soil Saves Lives' project, which empowers individuals and communities to be more self-reliant and regenerate the earth through organic farming methods, provides training for rural Indian farmers on the ‘soil food web’ and various composting techniques with the goal of assisting their transition back to natural, organic farming methods. We are also working on building, refurbishing and teaching about use of biogas digesters as a clean, renewable source of fuel. We believe that cultivating the skills required for sustainable food production will empower poor vulnerable farming households to improve food security and strengthen communities economic & environmental long-term resiliency. We envision a world in which people, inspired by nature, create and maintain healthy and abundant livelihoods that enhance biodiversity and regenerate healthy ecosystems.

Community Stories

55 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The Hummingbird Project is one of the most inspiring project I have come across till this day. Chris and Marilyn not only care about the people and the Earth, they also have a striking passion for sharing, learning, helping others. The way they chose to connect with communities, by spending time building relationships and understanding the local needs, reflects their ultimate devotion to make a difference...not for their sake , but for others' benefit. Their Hummingbird Project reflects its founders' genuine compassion, care and love.
It has been a honour to come across their way and learn from their project, receive their teachings, and share our experience in the field of food security. I wish them to receive all the support possible to keep growing their project and allow more farmers, small stakeholders and communities to receive their inputs and work hand-in-hand. Chris and Marilyn have become such a source of inspiration, both as people and within their project.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Chris and Marilyn are so genuine and down to earth people and this reflects in their dedication and effort they put in the hummingbird project. I have learnt so much in their lectures and there was never a moment that I found dull or boring. All the sessions were very engaging and active. I never though that I would take back so much knowledge about soil and the amazing variety of organisms that live within it. Also, outside classes they were ready to answer any questions that we had. Overall, this is an amazing initiative and I would definitely want this non-profit to be more well known because they are doing a fantastic job!!

2 Jehaan I.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Drawing their inspiration from the story of the humming bird trying to save the forest from burning down by doing the best it could do, Chris and Marilyn to are constantly striving to save the Earth and our ecosystem in every possible way they can. They have been a true inspiration to me and many others. Simplifying and breaking down complex science into a fun environment, this power couple shuffle around the country explaining to a thousand others about the party underneath our feet by means of their telescope and helping farmers convert their inert soils and inculcate these awesome creatures to create LIVING SOILS.

It just does not end there. Their amazing attempts at not just saving the soil but the seed as well with the Cleveland Seed Bank and all other initiatives gives us power to do more for our soil,seed and stomach.

More power to both you guys!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Chris and Marilyn are a key asset to a better understanding of your soil, your production system and working either in team or in community on a regenerative project. Their classes and explanations are dynamic and outstanding. Ask them for help to become an Hummingbird yourself, get ready for a better future and be the change you want to see.

3 Gabriella2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Dear Chris and Marilyne
as a total Greenhorn in matter I enjoyed your classes on seeds and soil at Navdanya - the Highlights of the whole course in fact.
I not only learned about for me so far totally unknown facts - I first of all was inspired by the love and passion you transmitted for the living soil, and the composition of compost and those beautifully ugly wurms and bacteria and and ;-))
Thank you ! Hope to keep in touch.
Gemma

3 Cori H.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Chris and Marilyn are excellent facilitators. They are extremely knowledgeable and passionate about their work. They are able to present technical information in an engaging way and connect with their students. I am inspired by their efforts to educate communities internationally to save seed, share seed, cultivate and appreciate healthy soils, create healthy communities, and combat climate change. The Hummingbird Project is a brilliant and genuine organization.

1 Writer

Client Served

Rating: 5

Got an opportunity to meet wonderful couple Chris & Marilyn at Navdanya. one of the best facalties for A-Z Agroecology & Organic food system course. A small but meaning full attempt to bring change in our environment. Beautiful souls with knowledgea and love for nature. Inspiration to me and many others with their journey of Hummingbird project and love for seed and soil. This course had bought me close to nature
Little loveable angel Cormac their beautiful creations who always got smile to all of us ,seeing diversity in his nature.
It was pleasure noning u Chris & Marily
for all the inspiration what I got from u.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Hummingbird project is, in my perspective, not just a project ,but an inspirational art-form that is beautifully shared with everyone who seek for the better change for the mother earth. And also they have a power to inspire people to see things differently.

It all comes from the two passionate representatives; Chris and Marilyn. Not to mention their abundance of knowledge and expertee, their attitude of sharing what ever they can offer and the joy of life with people is what have made The Humming Bird Project one and only.

I met them through Agroecology course at Navdanya farm in India, and their lectures, workshops, and even just a casual talk had opened my eyes and given me the positive perspective and ideas to work towards our common goal of saving this precious planet.

Thank you Chris and Marilyn again for all the inspirational things you have shared with us.

Writer

Client Served

Rating: 5

I met Chris and Marilyn approximately 1 1/2 months ago in India, where they were co-facilitating/co-teaching many aspects of the A-Z course at Navdanya - a space created by Vandana Shiva.

In a short time I learned so much from them. Topics such as, but not limited to, the science of seeds, seed saving, seed libraries/exchanges, living soil and its biology, compost, urban farming and living life with a purpose.

During the course they infused each lesson with knowledge, passion, excitement and a sense of humour - always leaving us with a thirst for more. Their classes were interactive, inclusive and inspirational for each and everyone of us from across the globe, regardless of our skill set or knowledge base.

On a personal level, as a secondary school principal from Canada, I wanted to instantly capture their enthusiasm for sharing in the teaching and learning process and transport them directly into my school community!!

Chris and Marilyn are doing incredible work on 3 continents through their organization, The Hummingbird Project. They meet people where they are at, and infuse their love for making the planet a better (and healthier) place with thousands of people along the way.

Together, they are truly the most inspiring and positive educators I have met!!
They have, most definitely, inspired me to 'get out there'.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have been living and working in East Africa for the last 12 years, working on a variety of development programmes from across sectors. Most recently, I've been the Programme Director of a $7M, systems-based climate change resilience programme in northeastern Uganda and on the Somali border of Kenya. I left my work to pursue direct trainings in permaculture and agroecology so that I could provide more hands-on and technical input in to resilience building in East Africa, as well as Southeast Asia where I'm increasing doing work.

I've dedicated this year to attend various trainings, including the one at Vandana Shiva's Navdanya Centre outside of Dehradun in India. Chris and Marilyn were among the stellar line up of instructors from around the world, hand-picked by Dr. Shiva for their deep technical knowledge on issues of seed saving and soil micro-biology. Chris and Marilyn are artful in their ability to take complex scientific concepts and convert them in to digestible, interesting and inspiring modules that are effective in helping the lay person understand important issues effecting living soil; a precious global resource under threat.

In the African context where people, especially women and girls, are increasingly vulnerable to climate shocks and stresses, it is critical that small farmers and homesteads are sensitized to the importance of selecting climate resilient seeds, or seeds with traits that can fetch higher market prices, linking poor communities with greater market opportunities and income generation.

Lastly, I have recently been doing work in southeast Asia on how to integrate principles and practices of permaculture to public health issues, including HIV/AIDs, Malaria and Water, Sanitation and Hygiene in Myanmar, Thailand and Cambodia. Chris and Marilyn saw eye-to-eye on me with how to address issues of malnutrition and even reducing environmental disease vectors to address a host of issues that effect household and community health, which adds to the system-based approach to the Humming Bird perspective, well beyond the aspects of agriculture and food production and in to comprehensive resilience and community well-being.

Not only have I gained greater technicals skills in the short time with Chris and Marilyn that I'll apply to my work with climate vulnerable communities, but I also look forward to partnering with the Hummingbird Project in the future on helping communities to restore functional ecosystems and enhance community health through regenerative food systems.