Mini Grants

RE: Mini grants round year 2007.

After careful deliberation, the Institute's President, Varadaan has determined that the organization is currently stretched too thin to competently manage a mini grants round for 2007.

Varadaan has experienced a vortex of time demands as he manages a redevelopment of the facility at 302 Pearl Street.

A few of our top judges were not available this year, and cultivating new talent was not possible in the time available. If you, or someone you know is interested in applying the Culture of Sustainability model as a member of our judge panel, or learning more about what this would involve, contact Varadaan: varadaanmisc(at)

Apparently the building, as a nonconforming structure, in the West Pearl Historic District, is under great scrutiny from Boulder's Planning Department. After a year of struggling with local officials, the process of beginning the actual building permit application may occur. Zoning issues are tricky at this site. The end result may be worth it - we hope to obtain over 50% of the building's heating load directly from the sun. We have been 100% wind powered for over a decade. One outcome may be helping city officials prepare to facilitate installation of solar heating and electrical systems throughout the city. Additionally, there is an opportunity to teach that a Bureaucratic system which requires a lot of time and money actually has a negative sustainability impact - money directly relates in our modern economy, to environmental impact. Bureaucratic process that takes extra time and resources increases a city's environmental footprint - a concept that has not reached the leadership here in GREEN BOULDER. Maybe this understanding requires second tier perspective, or just some common sense.

So apologies to all of you who would like to apply this year. We aren't going away, please come back next year.

This year we have to put the money into a more easily directed area of application - it will go to help build a hospital and teaching center in India, where the funds will be leveraged more than 10x because of the nature of that economy. Ayurveda, the natural medicine of India, which is a pure and ancient strain of Sustainable Culture, actually needs to be re-seeded into the multi-caste culture of India. The British did a lot of damage to the traditional culture of earth-harmony there, and an update to include Western medicine with Ayurveda is needed as well. Dr. Lad's project in Pune is uniquely situated to make a big impact in India, but also elsewhere because his international students will be able to learn special skills in a setting they otherwise would not experience.

We had a great cycle last year, even with the massive snowstorm on the Winter Solstice that ushered in the Winter quite literally. We had the awards event anyway, and picked a dozen amazing projects from over 50 applications. It took some effort to do a good job, and the entire judge panel felt very rewarded with the experience. At the Spring equinox, the Sustainable Culture Model was presented to a number of folks, and as a result some new dialogues and even new judging panel prospects have emerged.

On the Winter Solstice 2006, 12 $2000 minigrants were awarded to the best applicants in 12 categories of ÒSustainable Culture.Ó  Applicants had to be 501c3 nonprofit organizations unrelated to Solstice Institute. Look for a fresh application package for 2008!

We're not going away.

The application has been simplified, multiple categories can be applied for by one organization, and the project includes collecting information about Who is Who of Sustainable Culture in our area.

You know what you do, what your special area of expertise and activity is. But, do you deeply understand the relationship of your work to the whole situation, locally and globally?

"Sustainable Culture" can be understood as the cultural template that may be required if we are to truly experience sustainability, the long term thrival of human society on Planet Earth. A pragmatic approach to this daunting topic is to examine sectors of the whole pie, each a logically organized subsection of the whole ball of wax, but together revealing a glimpse of that whole ball of wax, a global Sustainable Culture which can be examined at different levels of scale, cultural development and topic area.
The program is administered through the Solstice Institute, a Boulder 501c3 nonprofit organization, which sponsors or has sponsored other Boulder projects like Dance Home, The Commons, Circle of Hearts Network , 302 Pearl Street Studios and the Boulder Housing Coalition.

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What is the Solstice Institute?

The Solstice Institute promotes the emerging culture of health, community, transformation and sustainability. It is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization which resides at 302 Pearl St. Studios and promotes community sponsored dances and workshops.

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