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From the Mara Soil – a Film About Simple and Natural Solutions to Poverty, Hunger and Disease

What if global hunger, poverty and disease could be solved with resources already at our disposal?

A film directed by Steve Schrenzel

It was a pleasure to meet Tara Blasco and Lyn Hebenstreit at the Tenth International Permaculture Conference (IPC10) in Jordan this month. Tara and Lyn have been deeply involved in a Tanzanian success story that you’ll quickly become immersed in via the excellent new documentary above.

With their work in Tanzania, Tara and Lyn had sought to go beyond the usual, ill-targeted NGO aid endeavours — which typically create only dependency — seeking instead to bring more systemic and lasting positive change. This desire lead them, as described by Tara and Lyn themselves in a previous post, to Geoff Lawton in 2006 and again in 2007, who helped point their work in the right direction and put the permaculture toolkit into their hands.

Since that time, Tara and Lyn’s work has focussed on bringing permaculture design into the communities within their sphere of influence. They ran with the concepts and are now seeing the fruit of them. Seeing these kind of successes should bring inspiration to all working in the field of aid work, where people in the most needy places can begin to take control back over their own lives as they work in their communities peacefully, intelligently and productively with a renewed sense of hope and purpose. These developing success stories certainly give encouragement and meaning to the work of Geoff and myself.

Kudos to the Global Resource Alliance team!


  1. Mambo, jambo mimzima!! Thankyou,
    for this post,,,yes like you i recently went to Tanzania and fell in love with the people and the masai..seeing the problems with the poverty and land resource management.
    I too have been trained with geoff and nardia and many more. I have aslo been involved with establishing and being on the commity of the Mullumbimby community garden for 3 years.

    I am seriously interested in doing work in Tanzania and sharing knowledge,
    I am wondering if there are any avenues to help spread this wonderful knowledge of permaculture

  2. Dear Tara and Lyn,
    just wanted to say that it was a priveledge to meet you and learn about your work during the convergence. I’m sorry we didn’t get more time to talk. I don’t have fixed dates yet, but I’m hoping to come to Tanzania next year to conduct a Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration workshop. If this would be of interest to you or your staff, please let me know and I will let you know the date and place when I have this information.
    Warm regards,

  3. I really appreciate you putting this video out there. I am going to share it all over. This is very encouraging right now. Thank you.

  4. Our Community College is interested in purchasing your film “From the Mara Soil” in DVD. How do we go about making this purchase? What is the cost of this title? Does it come with Public Performance Rights? Thanking you in advance for your quick response.

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