Please click His Majesty Jigme Singye Wangchuck (4th Druk Gyalpo) speech

With gewog leaders at Menchari on December 4, 2016

28 local leaders, recently (re)elected, from 7 districts visited Samdrup Jongkhar (SJI) as part of the 10 days training in leadership and management conducted by Sherubtse College for the Department of Local Government, Ministry of Home & Cultural Affairs. The aim of the field visit was to learn from SJI’s experience and to understand how local government, community and a CSO-led project collaborated for larger public good and appreciate the benefit.
As a GNH laboratory, SJI not only endeavored to consciously design its programs but also endeavoured to deliver them being totally mindful of the quintessence of GNH (e.g. income, productivity, etc. vs communal sharing, nutrition sufficiency, balance, harmonious co-existence, etc.); it also endeavoured to work collaboratively with the stakeholders. E.g. Waste, whether household, industrial, e-waste, medical, etc. being a consequence, direct or indirect, of development had to be dealt holistically, going beyond simply picking litters and dotting places with dustbins.
The event was organized at Menchari, the designated model GNH village. Menchari elders and youth also shared their story with the delegation. Responding to a question on youth migrating to towns after college, a youth representative with conviction and passion said, “I’ll come back after my graduation (4 years) and stand for gup’s election!”
Healthy food and drink were served with local products and nutrition consciousness (the regular SJI way). Oil, salt, sugar and tealeaf were the only foreign products consumed.
Mangmi, tshogpa and agriculture extension officer (AEO) of Orong gewog also participated in the event. AEO shared her experience working with a CSO-led project, SJI. The delegation was accompanied by officials from the Department of Local Government and Sherubtse College.


At home?




Question session

“Sharing my story of my village- Menchari”



With consciousness & concern, one can make mindful choices




Are the leaders required to think only for 5 years?













Photos of Thimphu & Samdrup Jongkhar landfills taken 5 years ago; both have reached their brim. Landfills our legacy?

Baskets and bags made from waste (PET bottles & plastic wrappers) by Dewathang women’s craft group. Craft is only an incidental benefit & not the prime focus, which can potentially contradict with waste reduction.




Nutritious & tasty food consciously prepared from local produce by Mencharipas. Saved Over Nu. 8000/- for the organizers. Win win situation for all!




Solar drier designed by JNEC (Jigme Namgyel Engineering College) made by the people of Menchari after being trained by carpenters and (women) solar engineers from Lauri (SJI’s 1st solar drier project site).