Good Earth, The Houseboat

The Village Ways Charitable Trust and Villageways Pvt Ltd. In collaboration  provided financial support to communities in the backwater villages of Kerala to enable them to construct a traditional Kettuvallam houseboat, which was launched in October 2011. This project was initiated to support the revival of traditional style boat making in wood and bamboo weaving techniques . The two bed-roomed houseboat, named “Goodearth”, is community owned and operated.

There has been a special emphasis by the Trust to involve the lady members of the village community. They demonstrate and teach delectable Kerala cuisine to the guests of the Goodearth Houseboat.  
Other community members have been trained in all aspects of boat management and operation, cooking, hygiene, safety and as  guides for the guests . Guests stay 3 or 4 nights on the houseboat, going on-shore at each participating village, where they are hosted by the community. The crew, cooks and guides are all local people.

Bio Diesel Fuelpod

Kerala houseboats are driven by diesel engines, using conventional diesel fuel. There is much concern at the polluting effects of diesel engines on the water and air environment of the backwaters, despite strict controls by the Government of Kerala.
Village Ways and the Trust are keen to convert the houseboat to using reprocessed oil, which is far less polluting than mineral diesel oil. reprocessed oil,  can be produced by processing waste cooking oil and other vegetable oil products. The Trust has researched opportunities for local production of reprocessed oil,  through a Fuel Pod. The Fuel Pod is a well-tested, portable, free-standing device that can produce up to 30 litres of reprocessed oil,  per day from waste cooking oil.

Benefits to the environment using reprocessed oil :-

  1. The fuel would be produced from waste oil that could otherwise cause pollution.
  2. Produces far fewer particulates, much less carbon is released, less carbon monoxide is produced and there is no ‘diesel smell’.
  3. Degrades in water, so there is less water pollution.
  4. It is a better lubricant, so engine noise is reduced.
  5. It  is cleaner than mineral diesel.
  6. The waste potassium salts can be used as a fertilizer.