Tsunamika has so far been the most successful and fulfilling socially responsible communication design intervention for Upasana.
The little Tsunamikas: mamma, sister and baby have touched millions of hearts offering a healing touch to those directly affected by the devastating Tsunami of 2004, and a balm to those who suffered the secondary trauma through the media; watching, reading and hearing about the calamity. Tsunamika brought a smile to her creators and to those who held her; transforming the bitter memories of the tsunami into something creative, innocent, simple, sweet and empowering.
The project started as a trauma counseling effort for the fisherwomen in February 2005. Like all other projects of Upasana, Tsunamika took to a life of joy. The raw material came
from industrial waste and 500 women were taught to make the dolls. Consequently, 200 women took it up for their livelihood. Between February and May of 2005, through 23 training modules 474 women from 6 tsunami-affected villages of coastal Tamil Nadu (India) were trained to create the dolls, 18 leaders emerged who became future trainers for the same program.
Following a “Gift Economy” Tsunamikas have never been bought or sold. They are shared, unconditionally; they are gifts of love and friendship. The whole project runs on donations, whole-hearted outpourings as Upasana has experienced. Tsunamika has had deep and widespread effects:
• From an economic perspective Tsunamika provided livelihood to
fisherwomen who were affected by the tsunami, they worked with dignity and joy.
• From a social and cultural point of view, this program created major shifts in perceived and projected values: from trading and competition to mutual self-giving and creating global friendship networks.
• From an educational perspective, Tsunamika brings new skills to its makers and a sensitive but positive way of relating to a disaster, especially for children, worldwide.
• For the spiritually ready, Tsunamika brings the joy of unconditional giving and self-discovery
• For designers, it widens the perspective of what a design can do. It gives an inspiring picture of what Upasana calls socially responsible design.
• From an environmental point of view, it is a beautiful transformation of waste from the garment industry into a valuable product.
• For NGOs and other groups inspired by this effort or to those who follow their hearts, Tsunamika provides an alternative to charity as well as business.
The program continues spiritedly, as Tsunamika acquires new meanings and has more creative roles to play. To order/consult Contact us