HOME IS WHERE THE ART IS
EVER HEARD OF VAAYU
13. August 2019
Are you a creative person looking for a holiday residency where taking care of the environment is top priority? A place where you can feel totally at home and which helps facilitate your creativity? Then Vaayu is the place for you.
The holiday residency provides a lifestyle driven by adventure, creativity and fun and at the same time having a positive impact on the community and natural environment.
Waste segregation, solar energy, no plastic bottles, no plastic straws, rooms built with organic bio gradable materials – what more could one ask for? These are all conscious efforts made by VAAYU in order to prioritise the environment in their business operations.
Based in the beautiful Goa in India, Vaayu was founded by Rahul and Jill Ferguson in 2013 with the aim of bringing together a community of like-minded people who have a sense of adventure and care about the environment.
The corporate philosophy of the company is one based on conscious capitalism. In our interview with Jill Ferguson, she explains what the term means:
"To put it simply, It is about being a good person through your work and business. About caring about everyone and everything that is connected to your business activities. Conscious Capitalism was coined as a term and business operating philosophy by “Whole Foods” founder John Mackey and his research partner Raj Sisodia. "It is a philosophy with a central premise that businesses should serve all major stakeholders, including the environment." When Rahul and I set out to set up Vaayu we decided we wanted to build a business that sought to do right by the community and the environment we work with. We aren’t perfect, and there is definitely still a lot more we would like to do and plan to do, but using the sentiment as a guiding principle as we continue to grow and operate as a company and brand."
According to Jill, the idea of sustainability combined with community life has a positive impact on visitors. In her words:
"One my favorite compliments that I get from guests, is that Vaayu feels like a second home. We are lucky enough to have many people return year after year, so in a way we grow together. They see Vaayu evolve and change over time and we with them. This is especially true for the Vaayu team and the Vision Collective artists.
We are really blessed to have a wonderful team who believes in the mission and vision of Vaayu and connects as friends not only colleagues."
There is no denying the fact that the idea is amazing and Goa is beautiful - combine that together and it is bound to make happy guests. Jill confirmed this:
"We are incredibly lucky to attract people who seem to align with our ethos, whether these are repeat customers, or first timers, we never seem to have anyone have a problem with the fact that we don’t sell bottled water, or give plastic straws. There are also a ton of people from abroad who call Goa home for the season or Indians who have moved permanently to Goa from various cities like Mumbai, Delhi, or Bangalore. This means we also have a strong number of more permanent or semi-permanent residents who help make up our community. These people help bring valuable knowledge to our guests and the rest of us on how we can continue to become more conscious on our journey to sustainability."
So how easy is it to implement sustainability? Jill answers:
“There are so many factors and ways to become more sustainable, more healthy but it is difficult for many us to make all those changes immediately. I saw a quote the other day which said “We don’t need a handful of people doing zero waste perfectly, we need millions of people doing it imperfectly.” And I agree. Having a community to help you on this journey so you don’t give up or get overwhelmed, is so important and that is part of what we are hoping to provide at Vaayu.”
One of the important elements of the Vaayu community, is the Vision Collective – a project which has been fortunate enough to host and work with some 30+ artists over the years. Many of whom have returned back to Goa. Some more than once. According to Jill, A few of the artists have even moved to Goa after their residency making them more of a permanent fixture in the community. Jill remarked on how watching all the artists continue to create and grow in their craft, inspires her. She finds it unique to be able to pass their passion on to her guests. She describes what she finds even more unique:
“Even more special to me is the fact that the artists who have been part of the Vision Collective have often become friends and continue to connect and support one another, collaborating at times on projects all over the world. Every time I walk around Vaayu and I see any of the art made by the various artists through the years I feel their presence still in the space and remember the energy they blessed us with.”
The project is currently focusing on promoting local artists and has had three art opening during the last season. Other upcoming projects include putting together a collection of poems written by the Vaayu resident, Shane Solanki, who was inspired by the art around Vaayu and its community.
Sounds exciting and would like to stay in touch? Here is a link to the website: https://www.vaayuvision.com/
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