The Road Less Travelled

The road less travelled - An Interactive Journey Through India

Through its Linking and Learning program, Community Aid Alliance takes you to the heart of India and community development practices with field visits to its linked communities and project sites.
Having run study tours for 25 years, the Community Aid Alliance team can provide a unique experience of India and the community development projects and processes it works with.
Community Aid Alliance runs regular study tours with students and interested groups from India and abroad on topics related to sustainable development. Our aim is to provide an opportunity for experiencial learning and to create an awareness on rights based approach to development work/ encourage participants to refect and learn on sustainable prectices that help the resource- poor and the planet

A study tour is also a wonderful way of getting to the centre of Indian culture. No amount of backpacking or tourist travel will offer such a deep insight into the country, its people and the issues they are facing. Some people are looking for more from a holiday - to learn about global issues such as climate change from the perspective of the marginalised, to contribute to social change or to experience a different perspective.

Whatever the reason , a study tour is bound to have an impact on participants' life and work by having access to and contact with rural communities, women leaders and social entrepreneurs.
The 24-day tour runs between Bangalore and Delhi, visits 7 states:Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, AndhraPradesh, Orissa, Jharkhand, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, and includes an introduction to development theory and practice and an insight to Indian culture, history and politics.
The field visit covers approximately 7 different development projects involving meeting with community members, living in the communities, participating in cultural events and discussion of issues. It will include meetings with Community Aid Alliance resource centres and project leaders as well as local political leaders.

There will be time for visiting cultural heritage sites such as the Sun Temple and Jagannath Temple in Puri, the holy Ganges at Varanasi, and Taj Mahal in Agra. There shall be ample opportunities for leisure and relaxation.
This unique tour is run by Community Aid Alliance and its partner organisations. The tour leader, Augustine Ullatil, project director of Community Aid Abroad, Eastern India for 25 years, has a wealth of experience and friendships with non government and community based organizations throughout India, has already run 40 community development study tours for Australian citizens.


Day 1 Arrival in Bangalore and welcome . Accommodation in Community Aid Alliance guest house in Bangalore. Rest, briefing and sight seeing in Bangalore.
Day 2 India Orientation: Briefing on India's history, culture and its political economy. Orientation on Indian civil society organisations and introduction to various approaches to development work. Preparation for project visits.
Day 3,4 & 5 Participants leave for project visit in small groups. Each group consists of 3-5 participants . Visit NGO projects in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and AndhraPradesh. Focus on women empowerment and Self Help Groups& Child Rights. Accomodations in respective NGO centres
Day 6 Return to Bangalore. Free time in Bangalore.
Day 7 Sharing and reflections from project visits. Theory inputs on Rights based Approach, participatory processes and gender justice.
Day 8 All participants leave for the second round of field visit to a project in North Andhra Pradesh. Accommodation in the NGO centre and / or in the project villages
Day 9,10&11 Input sessions from resource persons on : Indigenous people's issues, Climate change- mitigation and adaptation strategies, Natural Resource Management, Sustainable Alternatives, Social entrepreneurship and other interested topics of choice.) village visits and meetings.
Day 12 By train to Berhampur in Orissa. Acommodation in NGO campus, Rest. Free time
Day 13 Reflections with resource persons on current development issues and strategies with focus on sustainable alternatives.
Day 14,15 & 16 3rd round of field visits in Odisha. Travel in small groups to different field centres and night halt. Project Focus: water and sanitation, housing, education, community forestry and so on. Sharing on field visits, more inputs on monitoring & evaluations and NGO administration.
Day 17 Leave Berhampur by road to Bhubaneswar via Puri and Konark. Chance to visit Puri and Konark temples.
Day 18 Reflections on globalization issues. Social impact of mining and industrialization on the traditional communities and their coping mechanisms. Dialogue/ panel discussion on corporate social responsibility by social activists and business representatives.
Day i 9 _ 24 Travel by train to Delhi via Varanasi with 2 nights stay in Varanasi and 3 nights in Delhi. Visit some of India's famous religious and cultural centers. Chance to visit the Taj in Agra, experience the Holy Ganges and Sarnath in Varanasi. Recap on the journey and learning .
Day 25 Debrief, reflections and closing ceremony.

This study tour is one of the'Linking and Learning' initiatives of Community Aid Alliance (CAA). CAA is a collective of individuals, groups and networks in Australia and India who work for a better world. As a not-for-profit entity, it promotes and facilitates community based organizations and their self-help projects. CAA has been greatly influenced by the development understanding and practice of the former Community aid abroad, Australia, which supported community development projects in southern & eastern India for almost four decades.
The core activities of Community Aid Alliance are fundraising for and on behalf of community based organizations in India, and fostering community to community linking and learning between India and Australia. CAA runs a number of study tours, student and volunteer placements.
To learn more about Community Aid Alliance, visit

Cost: (starting in Bangalore, ending in Delhi) -
Cost includes accommodation, all meals, car and train travel, expenses on rural projects, taxes, entry fees, expenses for the resource persons, seminars and meetings. Any surplus moneys will go directly to Community Aid Alliance linked projects.
For tour details (cost, itinerary, upcoming tour dates.) please contact:
Augustine Ullatil (India) Email: Mobile: +919880435544 ,
Susannah Lathlean (Australia) Email: