Hemp Foundation – Revitalizing Rural Uttarakhand With A Hemp Revolution
It’s hard to believe, isn’t it, that only a few hundred kilometers away from you, roads are a luxury! Imagine living in a village, where there’s no concept of transportation. Inhabitants of these villages still depend on their feet, packed food, and stamina to travel to the nearest town. Journeys take several hours, if not days. It’s easy to believe, then, that the stories of the plight of the inhabitants of this agricultural-dependent villages seldom reaches the ears of the urban dweller.
Vishal Vivek, Jaspreet Singh and Vivek Singh, the co-founders of Hemp Foundation, did not wait. Instead, they and their team went beyond where roads would take them, in the forgotten villages of Uttarakhand. What they saw changed them forever. Men are nowhere to be seen. Reason – they’ve migrated to nearby towns to find employment and to keep their families fed. The big question that faced Vishal – does it have to be this way?
At Hemp Foundation, we’re convinced the answer is NO. Before we tell you why we believe so, let’s understand the problems that are literally erasing the existence of hundreds of villages from the map of India.
The 5 Cancerous Problems Plaguing Remote Villages in Uttarakhand
- The farmers are disconnected from the Indian growth story, economically, technically, as well as spatially.
- Decades-old farming practices keep farmers in these villages struggling with problems that most agriculturists don’t even recall anymore.
- Migration of menfolk means families are left back in the village, with wives pining for their husbands, and kids pining for their fathers, leaving the family fabric in tatters.
- Farmers are helpless against the vagaries of vermin and wild animals that can damage months old crops overnight.
- Women in these villages are ignorant of the possibilities of gainful labor and have no way to acquire any skills.
How does Hemp Foundation propose to offer a sustainable solution to these problems? The answer – industrial hemp.
Here’s a 5-milestone roadmap that Hemp Foundation has begun rolling out in the remotest of Uttarakhand villages:
- Introduce farmers to industrial hemp and the possibilities offered by Uttarakhand government’s decision to decriminalize its cultivation.
- Empower them with the economic and technological means to grow industrial hemp in a sustainable, legal, and profitable manner.
- Proliferate advanced means of organic hemp farming to enable farmers to cultivate world-class industrial hemp.
- Tap into the local, domestic, and international hemp market, set up robust sourcing channels connected to our network of hemp farmers, and remunerating them such that they can choose to happily continue to farm on their own land, profit from it, and hence lead a balanced life.
- Empower women by training them in cottage industry skills such as weaving, stitching, and embroidering, and offering them gainful employment.