It takes a village!
"Study nature, love nature, stay close to nature. It will never fail you." — Frank Lloyd Wright
A simple step towards skill building towards self sufficiency.
An art based initiative to create products out of the bountiful and abundant pine cones in the foothills of the Himalayas in this beautiful little village of Naukuchiatal.
The project ‘Cone of Vision’ aims at collectivising usage of local and cheap resources, preservation and pride in ethnic identity, creating a model of self sufficiency leading to grass root development. Its importance cannot be over emphasized at a time during the pandemic when a lot of daily wage workers and disadvantaged people were worst affected. Online schooling in its wake has had the hardest hitting repercussions for those on the wrong side of the digital divide. It put an impetus on the resources that the parents could by far not provide for continuation of remote learning. It will complement the income of families of the region which are primarily focussed on subsistence agriculture, daily wagers and those working in the tourism industry which has suffered vagaries during the pandemic.
The production of the craft pieces doesn't require any capital inputs such as land or machinery. Another important aspect is the preservation of traditional knowledge and cultural connotations of the craft, which are often lost in semi mechanized artefact projects. The resource centre set up at the gram panchayat will play a pivotal role in ensuring that the students can eventually administer, account and market their goods. The children are sensitised to be decision makers while creating the pieces rather squelching their role to mere production line workers. They should retain the cultural depth to entice and generate curiosity amongst tourists to buy the unique mementos, characteristic of the Kumaoni region.
An underlying objective is to create a project which can outlive the incubation phase sustained by initial donor organisations/ corporates,evolves into self sufficiency, mitigates the necessity of any middle men, and the children learn entrepreneurship and can function as small enterprises. The skills imparted should enable self-run vendor-buying, creation, pricing, packaging, marketing channels, point of display tie ups, listing on e shops and distribution networks by rural stakeholders themselves.
In the first phase of generating an actionable and sustainable business plan, pop up stalls have been installed in hotels, cafes and lakeside mall road shops where tourists are prompted for souvenir shopping.