On January 18th, 2017, Govardhan Eco Village (GEV) was granted the Global Award for Excellence in Innovation, representing the project Eco-tourism as a Catalyst for Rural Development, at the UNWTO Awards 2017 in Madrid, Spain. Gauranga Das, GEV Co-President, was in Madrid to receive the Award.
The UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) is the United Nations agency responsible for the promotion of responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism. The organization is committed to promoting tourism as an instrument in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, geared towards reducing poverty and fostering sustainable development worldwide.
The Govardhan Eco Village is a a 70-acre sustainable farming community and retreat center on the foothills of the Sahyadhri Mountains, 108km north of Mumbai, India, dedicated to living in harmony with the environment and developing a ‘spiritual ecology’ that can bring about tangible, positive changes “within ourselves – and how we interact with the planet”.
Srila Prabhupada, the Founder-Acharya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness, frequently encouraged his disciples to adhere to the principle of “simple living and high thinking” by developing farm communities for healthful and ecological living. To serve this vision, his disciple Radhanatha Swami, the spiritual mentor for GEV, envisioned a sustainable farm community in India and inspired his followers to create GEV.
Despite its humble beginnings in 2003, GEV is now an award-winning eco community where the technology of modern science combines with Vedic wisdom. It provides a sustainable solution to the ecological crises we are now facing throughout the world.