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Deforestation not only impacts climate change but also jeopardizes the livelihoods of countless farmers. Soil erosion and the depletion of topsoil degrade land, leading to reduced agricultural productivity, unemployment, and a cycle of poverty. Mahindra and Mahindra's sustainability initiatives aim to address this complex issue through Project Hariyali, a collaborative effort between the Mahindra Foundation and the Naandi Foundation. This project, initiated by the Mahindra Group in 2007, has a dual objective: to increase green cover and address ecological imbalances while supporting marginalized farmers.
Project Hariyali began by setting an annual target of planting one million trees across all Mahindra locations. In 2010, it expanded to Araku Valley near Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, to create a functional forest for the tribal community. The project has since extended its reach to Northern India, specifically in Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, and Uttar Pradesh, where it focuses on organic regenerative agriculture with zero chemical use.
Over the years, the project has reforested the Araku region, providing new livelihoods for 26,000 Adivasi farmer families and significantly increasing their average income. A 10,000+ member cooperative has fostered a healthy ecosystem and biodiversity. The sustainably grown gourmet coffee from the region has gained international recognition, enhancing the premium status of Araku Coffee.
Recognition and Awards:
Project Hariyali has received several awards, including a Platinum rating for its impact assessment in the Araku Valley. The Mahindra Group was recognized in the Skill Development & Livelihood Category at the FICCI CSR Awards in 2020, and they also received awards in Environment and Sustainability at the CSR Conclave Awards.
The Road Ahead:
Project Hariyali's future plans involve planting five million trees by 2026, contributing to the 1t.org pledge of the World Economic Program to conserve, restore, and grow one trillion trees by 2030. This monumental undertaking will rely on partnerships with like-minded communities.
Exclusive Collaboration Portal:
To encourage participation in this biodiversity movement and help individuals and organizations mitigate their carbon footprint, Project Hariyali has launched an exclusive collaboration portal on Mahindra Founder's Day. The portal allows you to gift trees to loved ones or contribute to the greening of our planet easily. Visit https://www.hariyali.org.in/ and be a part of this initiative today!