One-line solution summary:
Training girls and women of Banjara, a tribal community of India, THROGH their children, IN THEIR LINGO, to use smart phone for e-commerce.
Pitch your solution.
The Banjara tribal population have great products that can fetch a good price in the cities. These are mostly created by women in their society. At the moment they are being exploited by middlemen or just men!
Training and support to access e-commerce solutions will help them to bridge the digital divide. Most of them have access to smart phones. Children are good at navigating these. The best option is to train the women through children in an effort to empower them both. We will team up with local partners to form a network of support to make this a success. Eventually my dream is that someone sitting in New York being able to order a blouse made by a woman from Banjara tribe in Telengana, (of India) knowing that the purchase is directly benefitting the maker.
Film your elevator pitch.
What specific problem are you solving?
Women and children from Banjara tribal community in India are often exploited by everyone around them. The women and children in these communities are very strong. They have amazing ability to create beautiful products like jewellery and costumes. They gave amazing wealth of singing and dance traditions too.
Banjara art is rich and includes performance arts such as dance, music, folk and plastic arts like rangoli, textile embroidery, tattooing and painting, all led by women in their tribe.
All is looked down upon by the majority communities around them due to the complex cast system in India.
Sadly, due to the male dominance in their society, they are compelled even to get rid of their best creations: girl children. Most of them are compelled to work in the city as manual labourers, physically and psychologically exploited, end up as alcoholics.
By helping them to use smart phone to learn digital skills with an intention to open up their eyes towards e commerce possibilities can change their world.
What is your solution?
Women and children from Banjara tribal community are often exploited by everyone around them. By helping them to use smart phone to learn digital skills with an intention to open up their eyes towards e commerce possibilities can change their world. Once we manage to break the digital divide in e commerce, it will open up huge potential for them. I can imagine a Banjara girl of Hyderabad, managing her jewellery business though her Instagram linked shop, earning an income for herself and her family. Once she is able to establish herself as the breadwinner, it will be a great beginning of a positive change in her community.
Perhaps we may have to use a shared smartphone to begin with. However, once scaled up, it will open up an alternative e commerce space driven by women from tribal and minority communities all around the world.
This an effort to preserve their community spirits and expertise through empowering their women and children using simple technology, e commerce. At the moment the technology is their curse, as most of them are used as labourers in building the high tech buildings. They can do much better than this to themselves.
Who does your solution serve, and in what ways will the solution impact their lives?
When you hear the word ‘Banjara’ you see the picture of a woman with heavy metal jewellery, armful of ivory bangles, and clothes embellished with tiny pieces of mirrors. Today, the Banjara tribe live on the fringes of society.
The tribe has been known in India from centuries. It appears to be a mixed race and its origin and organisation maybe due to the wars of the Delhi emperors.
Nomadic in nature, their language doesn’t have a script. In today’s world, a language which doesn’t have a script is considered as an under-developed language. It doesn’t help their development.
According to the latest estimates, Banjara population is nearly 25, 00, 000 and males account for 65 percent.
Majority people of this community are now vicious cycle of poverty, it results debt trap and it leads to sale of baby girls, migration. 85 percent of the people are consuming alcohol at early age, 67 percent are under malnutrition, frequently exposing to waterborne diseases. Banjaras culture, social system, administration system and economic system and their societal values are getting eroded in the globalization era in Telangana tribal villages. The project will be initiated in such a village in Meheboob district of Telengana.
Explain how the problem, your solution, and your solution’s target population relate to the Challenge and your selected dimension.
There is a population completely exploited by the society around them. The exploitation has been going around for centuries. Women and children in this population have extremely great artistic and organisational abilities, that is very much appreciated by the world outside their community. If there is a way for them to access the market for their products into this society, in an interesting way, that is the solution. By introducing them to digital tools and digital marketing through e commerce platforms, they can overcome the centuries old servitude and find freedom. Sometimes, simple solutions can save a population.
In what city, town, or region is your solution team headquartered?Hyderabad, Telangana, India
What is your solution’s stage of development?
Pilot: An organization deploying a tested product, service, or business model in at least one community
Who is the primary delegate for your solution?
Murali Nair, Director, Flying Elephant CIC
If you have additional video content that explains your solution, provide a YouTube or Vimeo link here:
Which of the following categories best describes your solution?
A new application of an existing technology
Describe what makes your solution innovative.
Providing access and control of e-commerce solution for a population who doesn't even have a written script is much more than bridging the digital divide. This will be an innovative approach for the benefit of this population guided by their needs and for their benefit. This makes "Jai Banjara" a unique project.
Describe the core technology that powers your solution.
Core technology is internet connection in the village and creation of a dedicated website. This will rely on the seller's ability to market themselves. Will involve training them in social media tools too.
Provide evidence that this technology works.
This is an innovative way. Many people have tried selling tribal products for their benefit. Haven't come across any projects where the producers of this kind, who have direct access to a direct marketing method.
The only evidence that I can think of that when I sed to purchase stuff from them for my own use, even when I was paying city prices, it helped many people. As a buyer, I knew the benefit was going directly to them. My intention is to replicate this for their benefit.
Please select the technologies currently used in your solution:
What is your theory of change?
Bridging the digital divide can sustain diverse cultures and create a happy population.
Select the key characteristics of your target population.
Which of the UN Sustainable Development Goals does your solution address?
In which countries do you currently operate?
In which countries will you be operating within the next year?
How many people does your solution currently serve? How many will it serve in one year? In five years?
First year 20 people
Second year 80 people
Third year 500 people
Fourth year 1000 people
Fifth year 2500 people
What are your goals within the next year and within the next five years?
What barriers currently exist for you to accomplish your goals in the next year and in the next five years?
How do you plan to overcome these barriers?
What type of organization is your solution team?
If you selected Other, please explain here.
How many people work on your solution team?
Part time _ one
How many years have you worked on your solution?
Why are you and your team well-positioned to deliver this solution?
What organizations do you currently partner with, if any? How are you working with them?
Do you primarily provide products or services directly to individuals, or to other organizations?
In which of the following areas do you most need partners or support?
Do you qualify for and would you like to be considered for The Andan Prize for Innovation in Refugee Inclusion?
Do you qualify for and would you like to be considered for the Innovation for Women Prize?
Do you qualify for and would you like to be considered for The GM Prize on Good Jobs and Inclusive Entrepreneurship?
Do you qualify for and would you like to be considered for The Gulbenkian Award for Adult Literacy?
Do you qualify for and would you like to be considered for the AI for Humanity Prize?
Do you qualify for and would you like to be considered for the Future Planet Capital Prize?