Little Ideas Lasting Impact
Updated: May 21, 2020
While strolling through the handloom and handicrafts section of Karnataka Chitrakala Parishath a few days ago, I stumbled upon a jewelry stall. Just for information sake, jewelry is not something that fascinates me, but I am an avid admirer of the prodigious amount of skill that goes into making them. I too have experimented jewelry making at different phases of my life and thoroughly enjoyed it, but there was something about this stall that stood out.
The exhibits were distinctive, there were jewelry made of rice, grass, hand printed fabric, wood, metal, coconut shells etc. to name a few. Unable to contain my admiration towards the unusual designs, "You have an amazing collection here" I said to the charming human on the other side of the stall. The humble person that he was, smiled and politely passed on the credits to his team tirelessly working across India. "They are always busy, I give them ideas and they make it" he said.
What is your name Sir? I asked. "My name is Harish, me along with my sister Sharmila co-founded an NGO called Hindustan Tribes we make jewelry from natural and upcycled materials, he said. After our initial conversations about the designs and his network of artisans around the country, I was curious to know his story.
"What inspired you to do this Sir" I asked. His eyes lit up as he said "I'm a passionate traveler, as I traveled across the country, I saw an abundance of skill being wasted on the streets or Rajasthan, Assam, Orissa and many more, I wanted to do something about it. They made elaborate traditional products which consumed a lot of time and earned them very little. But I offered them to make jewelry out of it. I had ideas, they had the skills."
In Orissa they made Gods and Goddesses out of paddy and straw now, they also make jewelry, in Assam they made baskets and carpets out of Sabai grass, now they also make jewelry, it takes them very little time and because of the unique designs they sell anywhere. We have also tied up with a few big brands and it's going great. They are all busy now."
It was interesting to see how a small idea had impacted the lives of so many communities, brought them all together and empowered them to grow together. Sometimes, all it takes is a simple idea to bring about great changes.
What do you think?