A mela in the mountains of Himachal Pradesh, India. No billiard balls here, just unpredictable interactions on an endlessly variegated surface.

Unravelling Complexity.

In desiring to include more success stories about charities doing the right thing, I solicited a guest post from Jeph Mathias. Jeph works with a variety of NGOs across Asia (and beyond), specializing in the idea of complexity in development. This story was originally posted at Jeph's blog, unpredictable. It's Jeph from here: A small project …

Continue reading Unravelling Complexity.


I was getting kids for the literacy program when I saw a crowd gathering in one of the poorer neighborhoods of our community. An older woman was flailing about; three other ladies attempted to restrain her. I told my kids to hurry along without me and approached to see if it was a medical emergency. …

Continue reading Sledgehammer


Soon after we came to the country, we encountered a man in our community who suffered from mental illness. He tended to sit half-dressed in the alley near our friends' room. At times he shouted incoherently and made motions with his head. He appeared to be suffering. One of my friends would sometimes sit next …

Continue reading Commotion