Background & Objectives

objectivesPan Himalayan Grassroots Development Foundation is a voluntary organization engaged in spearheading holistic mountain development in the central and western Himalaya since 1992.

The degradation of fragile ecosystems in the Himalaya has impacted negatively on sustainable mountain farming systems. This has affected traditional food security, resulting in economic insecurity, out-migration and increasing numbers of women headed households.

To find a fresh balance in the quality of lives for such marginalized farming communities, Grassroots has been involved with creating a platform for establishment of on farm and off farm pro poor business ventures, with farming families as the primary stakeholder, with Self Help Groups playing a pivotal role in the planning, implementation and management of these initiatives.

Efforts over the past few years have led to the creation of a network of women who are involved with various viable business activities, which provide small yet significant incomes on a sustainable basis.

This network of hill women in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand state was largely possible due to the efforts of women spearhead team members of Grassroots who ‘hived-out’ to establish a collective of several self-help groups as a non-profit called Mahila Umang Samiti in the year 2001. However, based on the success of these pilot initiatives as well as future plans for further growth, efforts were made to transform the business ventures of thhis non-profit to a more appropriate form of organization leading to the establishment of a for-profit Producers Company, which was formally registered on 9 January 2009, under section 9A of the Companies Act,1956.