To move forward you have to give back...
I believe that we should give back to the communities that we take knowledge, resources or labour from. For My Wellness Company, the knowledge used predominately comes from India. Therefore, I donate 10% of my profits to the women's empowerment programme at Govardhan Eco-Village in Maharashtra, India.
WHY GOVARDHAN ECO-VILLAGE?
Govardhan Eco-Village (GEV) in the heart of Maharashtra, based on the principles of “simple living and higher thinking”. It’s a community which works on preserving ecology, work for rural upliftment, hosts multiple yoga, self-improvement, health, academic and spiritual events throughout the year, within its tranquil and sustainable space.
GEV is a UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) eco tourism award winning model farm community established to showcase how to live in harmony and respect with people, nature and the divine proven as a Symbiotic Sustainable Development Model (SSDM). This SSDM has been recognized by United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEP) as synergistic solution for SDG’s and climate change in its global challenge program.
GEV operates with ‘Hub and Spoke Model’. The hub approach has successfully adapted and implemented various green technologies on its100 acre campus. Sustainability initiatives in its campus includes organic farming energy, platinum rated green buildings and rain water harvesting. Meanwhile, the spoke approach is working with 78+ tribal villages to make them sustainable thus impacting 1.5 million+ lives. Beneficiaries include over 100000 cataract patients, 9000+ student beneficiaries from 24 schools, 7000+ communities with water resource development initiative and 300+ women self-help groups being supported.
WOMEN'S EMPOWERMENT PROGRAMME
The Women's Empowerment Programme at GEV encourages women to emerge as confident individuals and conquer the challenge of contributing financially to the family and self-help groups, while managing the household. Capturing the strength of women in rural environment and empowering them with an inclusive participatory approach is the essence of our programme.
This is achieved by:
empowering women through employment
creating an eco-system of self-help groups for sustained growth and development
education for women to improve their socio-economic status AND education of men to dismantle patriarchal beliefs
Involving women in the planning and development stage of a development programme as well as at the decision making level has made a difference to their presence. This is evident with documented case studies where women are creating success stories with increased self-confidence, self-esteem and dignity. Increased shareholding in family income and assets are a proof of the same.
Women from rural project areas are being educated about the power that lies in their hands, they are organized in self-help groups, encouraged to take the microcredit programs and small enterprises for income generation. More than 180 groups of women have been formed with a membership base of 1900+ women benefiting nearly 10,000 people.