Happiness is celebrating International Women’s Day by honoring rural tribal women entrepreneurs of Gujarat.
It was indeed a great successful event Startup Village – Rural Women Entrepreneurship Development Program today supported by Hindalco Industries Birla Copper Dahej Unit in presence of more than 100 rural women participants and women entrepreneurs role model across India.
Our today’s chief guest Ms. Reshma Krishnan, CEO of H M Group who came all the way from Cochin and motivated all the participants to dream high and touch the sky by sharing her inspiring entrepreneurial journey.
Geetaben Avaiya from Narmada District who runs banana wafer business and employed more than 30 rural women also inspired us all and gave valuable guidance to the participants.
Tribal Women from Ambica Self Help Group from Vansda shared their story of Nahari Project – ( provides traditional food ) supported by BIAF and Riddhi Siddhi Group from Daang shared story and challenges of their successful Project Apna Bakery ( millet products ) supported by Aga Khan Rural Support Foundation.
We also had small group activity in which participants has made Business Model Canvas for their project ideas. We would select feasible ideas and help them to convert into social enterprises to create livelihood opportunities for rural women in their villages.
I am really thankful to Satish Bhuvir and his entire team for their great efforts to make this event a grand success.
We welcome you to be part of our 1st edition of Jaipur Prerna Yatra happening during 15 to 17 March 2019.
Jaipur the capital of Rajasthan state in India was founded in 1727 by Maharaj Jai Singh II, who ruled Jaipur State from 1699–1744. Initially his capital was Amber, which lies at a distance of 11 km from Jaipur. He felt the need of shifting his capital city with the increase in population and growing scarcity of water. Jaipur is the first planned city of India and With a strategic plan, the construction of the city started in 1727. It took around 4 years to complete the major palaces, roads and sqaure. The city was built following the principles of Vastu Shastra. According to that time, architecture of the town was very advanced and certainly the best in Indian Subcontinent.
Jaipur Prerna Yatra ( An initiative of Serve Happiness Foundation) is a 3 days excursion across the pink city Jaipur to explore the rich heritage and historical places. In addition, we would also visit amazing role models and social organizations who are bringing positive change in the society and nation at large.
So far we have organized 12 yatras including Narmada Prerna Yatra, Sabarmati Prerna Yatra , Tapi Prerna Yatra in Gujarat with more than 200 amazing changemakers from all walks of life ( Students, Scientist, Engineers, Social Workers, Entrepreneurs, Farmers, Environmentalist, Corporate Professionals, Doctors, Indian Navy, Academician and many more ) from 18 states of India. Join us in this journey of change.
“We can’t speak but we can serve you with a smile”, come and enjoy the vegetarian food with positivity everywhere.
Happiness is visiting a unique restaurant in Jaipur known as Vitthal’s Kitchen run by DEAF & MUTE heroes. See and feel the positive and vibrant side of life with amazingly delicious food. We are exploring unsung heroes and amazing role models for our upcoming Jaipur Prerna Yatra.
Happiness is celebrating 70th Republic Day with team Human Life Foundation, Jaipur, Serve Nature and Startup Launcher.
It’s indeed my honor to be invited as chief guest today for flag hosting program organized by Pt Hemraj Chaturvedi for slum kids. Hemraj ji is doing great noble work by providing free education and mid day meal for underprivileged kids. I really felt blessed by serving happiness to kids today.
Happiness is visiting Junaraj:Mini Kashmir in Narmada Prerna Yatra ( Rural Tourism Edition ) and interacting with the tribals for creative livelihood opportunities through rural tourism.
Having regained their territories and with the danger from the sultans of Ahmedabad receding, the rulers of Rajpipla decided to shift their capital in the latter half of the fifteenth century lower down to a scenic site, a bowl surrounded by the Satpura hills on the banks of the River Karjan. They built a new fort, the ruins of which are still in evidence. This came to be known as Junaraj.
Seeing the enchanting natural beauty of Junaraj, one can understand why Rajpipla is sometimes called ‘Switzerland of the East’ and ‘mini Kashmir’. After construction of a dam just as the Karjan emerges from the hills into the plains, water from the reservoir collects around Junaraj, forming a large lake. A temple of Lord Shiva still stands, along with smaller temples of other deities.
Through Narmada Prerna Yatra we are trying to create livelihood opportunities through tourism for the tribals residing in nearby villages.
Happiness is meeting Prince Manvendra Singh Gohil of Rajpipla along with Prof. Amy, University of California, UCLA, Jasmine PhD Student , University of Chicago and Sonal Patel, Founder of Eklavya Foundation at Ratanpor Village and learned about their social development projects for South African tribe called Siddi community.
These people are Afro-Indians who got settle down here 600 years back. According to one commonly accepted legend (Patel 1986), the founder of the Sidi settlement in Jambur in Gujarat is supposed to have originally come from Kano in Nigeria via the Sudan and Mecca after his Hajj pilgrimage. This leader was a wealthy merchant by the name of Bawa/Baba Ghor who first settled in (Ratanpor) the Rajpipla Hills near Bharuch and Khambat where he developed mining and trade in agate, the precious stone known as akik in India.They are also known for their special folk dance called “Dhamal”. In-spite of having rich culture and heritage this special tribe facing lots of problems. We had meeting with group of people including youth, women from Siddi community and discussed about the problems they are facing. The major problems were secondary education, English language, lack of confidence and lack of employment opportunities.
Women are the ones who bear the actual pain and conceive generations after another. If they are empowered, it can only lead to a more flourishing, prosperous and humanistic society and nation at large! With the support of Hindalco Industries Ltd, Birla Copper Unit Dahej we have started Unnati Program to empower rural women through entrepreneurship.
We have designed the program in 2 phases. During the 1st phase we have sensitized about 900 rural women of 10 villages for entrepreneurship and make them aware of entrepreneurial opportunities in the Dahej- Bharuch region of Gujarat.
We have organized an interactive entrepreneurial session with them. The purpose was to give them an idea how to start the business and what are the key points to be taken care like loan facilities available, resource availability, target customer, marketing strategy, partnership proposition and qualitative product making etc. At the end, women showed their interest in starting their own business. They have registered their name with the business idea.
During the 2nd phase selected participants would be provided the further in depth training and exposure visits to show how the whole process work and on what things they have to focus to start their business. Our aim is to start small social enterprises in the villages to empower the women and make them self independent. It would also help them to boost their confident and give them opportunity to showcase their abilities and skills to the world.
Happiness is celebrating Diwali by serving happiness to the tribals of our beautiful Narmada region.
I felt myself really blessed by volunteering in free dental camp organized by DrVarun Vasava and his team at Khochrapada village near Sagbara and serve the tribals. There are hundreds of villages in rural Narmada who do not have access to basic healthcare facilities. Even they don’t have basic awareness about dental healthcare and dental treatment is too costly which they can’t afford. My dear friend Dr.Varun who belong from this region regularly conduct free dental camp since last 7 years. He has treated more than 6000 patients for free. He is also building small dental clinic in his village to provide free dental treatment to poor tribal people of this region.
Through Narmada Prerna Yatra ( Rural Tourism Edition ) we are also trying support such projects and role models who are working selflessly for the rural tribal people of this region.
To support or donate or be volunteer in this project you can contact us at: www.servehappiness.org
The Tribal population in Gujarat is mainly concentrated in the eight districts along the eastern border of the state. 96% live in The Dangs, Valsad, Surat, Bharuch, Vadodara, Panchmahals, Sabarkantha and Banaskantha. The tribal region extends from Sabarkantha district through Panchmahals down to Surat, Valsad and The Dangs. About 92% of the scheduled tribes are from the rural areas.
The Kotwalias tribe of South Gujarat is generally landless people who primarily depend on bamboo basket making for their livelihood. Their products include split bamboo mats (Palas), threshing trays (Topla) and baskets (Supra). Some Kotwalia communities still reside within forest areas while others have shifted to agricultural villages but maintain their traditional cottage industry. In the past, Kotwalia communities received low prices from contractors and middle men for their products. Efforts have been made to break this exploitative relationship by harvesting and supplying bamboo quotas to basket making communities and guaranteeing a market by buying back their products.
The bamboo work provides employment to the entire family with the minimum of investment and an industry is running in the Dangs District of Gujarat. The Bamboo industry is useful in tribal areas because it needs minimum amount of investment and provides comparatively maximum amount of return.
We at Serve Happiness Foundation firmly believe that it’s our moral responsibility to preserve our art, culture and heritage by supporting our artisans and promoting their arts/products.
Let’s empower our rural artisans by buying their eco friendly products in this diwali 😊
Digital revolution plays vital role in any nation’s development.And Digital India is a great step to bring our nation forward in the league of developed nations. But still in India digital revolution is more required in our villages which can strengthen them and connect them with real world. After working for about 5 years now in social sector i found our rural India is much richer than big metro cities. The only thing they are missing the connectivity with the rest of the world and Digital India can play major role in this. On 20th June 2015 when i got an honor to meet Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam , i asked the question how we can develop villages and the youth of rural India and he answered very precisely in 4 words: Infrastructure, Knowledge, Financial and Technology connectivity. And these 4 connectivity possible with Digital India.
I am fortunate enough to contribute towards digital India through some of the projects i have worked with HMP Foundation in rural areas of Bharuch-Narmada district.
1. Rural Geographic Information System: This project we started with the intention to map health and education statistic of Bharuch-Narmada district. In this project i have worked with world’s renown ESRI company. The whole idea was to map health and education status of rural part of Bharuch-Narmada district so that we can provide help in particular villages accordingly. I am thankful to Intel company who provided us Intel Classmate PC using which my field office used to visit villages periodically and feed the real data in our system which help us to make various decisions.
2. Computer Education Center: Computer education becomes necessity in today’s life but still in our rural students are not getting proper computer education through which they can compete in the real world. After doing computer literacy survey and research in villages, we have opened computer education center to provide computer literacy for village students.
2. Career Counseling System: Being studying in rural school i always found that the biggest drawback which students of rural India facing is lack of proper career counseling. They are not aware of career options available in the real world. With the help of Maa Foundation, Vapi we have conducted and guide so many schools in rural areas of Bharuch district using computerized career counseling system.