An insight about rural India

India is a country where 60 percent of its population lives in villages. It is rightly said that the soul of India dwells in its villages. As a person who have lived in the cities, the village lifestyle is quite attractive. I get to escape from the hustle and bustle of the city and enjoy the peaceful, calm and quiet life for a while. Then why do we see a trend that more and more people from villages migrate to cities which are already overpopulated and over polluted !

The ground realities about life in rural areas of India are much different. There are lack of basic necessities such as inadequate power supply, enough economic activities or job that make living in rural India a challenge. The infrastructure, heath care and education facilities are not respectable. The agriculture, primary occupation in rural areas, is also marred by climate change effects such as irregular and inadequate rainfall.

The Indian government as well as many not for profit organisation have realised these issues. They have taken the bold and decisive initiative to improve the living conditions in rural India. But the mere size and scale of problem is so huge that it need more efforts form many more actors. We at Leafymade are doing our best within our capacity to address some of these issues.

We make effort to enable and empower the tribal village communities in Odisha, India to be self employed or in other words to be entrepreneurs. They know their forests the best and have been sustainably living in and around them. Our efforts are to help them commercialise their traditional knowledge and help them to have secondary source of income. We primarily focus on the women communities and at present we have 200 women in our network involved in sourcing of the leafs used for Leafymade products.

I personally love spending time with these women. They are great source of inspiration. Their cheerful smiles and will to fight is something that I learn from them. In return, our team talk, discuss and teach them about women health issues, child care and many other issues. Next time when I go back to visit them, I will take a picture book of our customers in Sweden using their products. I am pretty sure they would love that.

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Meenu Choudhary
Co founder, Leafymade