Women and their connection with biodiversity.

Today we celebrate International Women's day. A moment in time for Adya to reflect on its direct and indirect collaboration with women in the 5 regions we work with.

 

In fact, most of the time we do not focus on gender while discussing our projects together.  For example, I realize that I'm used to working with young men in India, leading the cooperative from their desks and guiding their partners and clients to the farms. It takes time to get to know the women a bit further away in the organisation and on the field.

What we do notice is women active on the field, women coordinating meetings on finance and farm related issues. We have also met women receiving us in their homes explaining their work and knowledge. Without a doubt these (translated) talks are the most impressive ones as they bring us to the soil, the daily life and stories of families on their land, sometimes holding on, sometimes proud of their achievement.

As impressive as the women farmers in India are our friends and colleagues leading their companies and working with groups of farmers or cultivators.

We think about Ms. Susana Cardenas-Overstall who was active in London as a journalist but went back home to the Manabi region in Ecuador and started working with a cooperative of cocoa farmers. 

We mention Ms. Samantha Skyring who is in charge of Oryx Desert Salt in the South-African part of the Kalahari desert region and developed a project with the tribes nearby an ancient salt pan. 

We also think about Ms. Huong Hoang in the North of Vietnam who is connecting the Red Dzao tea plantation owners with the outside world. And the women from the Red Dzao and related families that pass on their knowledge and experience. 

It seems almost too easy to just mention these great women in a few sentences. Without a doubt, they have had to fight to achieve their dreams and goals. And they still need to face many gender related issues. Adya supports them all the way and will continue to share their passion and spirit.

Adya works with Susana, Samantha and Huong and shares on their endeavours via our connections in Europe. We will continue our support from our part of the world as it is not only a commitment for today, it is for life. 

We are either going to have a future where women lead the way to make peace with the earth, or we are not going to have a human future at all
— Dr. Vandana Shiva