“It was a turning point for me,” said Ruchi Jain, Founder and CEO of Taru Naturals, about her trip to the villages of small-scale farmers in India struggling with the effects of climate change. “I realized that if you want to make a big impact on the world, you have to be grassroots based—it has to be a movement.” Since then, Jain has grown Taru Naturals into a fair-trade network connecting over 10,000 tribal and small-scale organic farmers across India to the resources and training they need to grow climate-resilient crops and markets to sell their products.
Project Kirana is currently training 3,000 women shop owners and managers in the cities of Lucknow and Kanpur, working to optimize business operations and leverage digital and financial tools to improve decision-making, personal agency, and revenue.
ANDE is analyzing the promising project data from AWEF Asia projects, which concluded at the end of 2021. One of the early key learnings is that women entrepreneurs who participated in AWEF Asia funded programs reported increased confidence, self-efficacy, financial and investment literacy, and ability to critically evaluate potential investment and financing options.
ANDE spoke to Jona Resphiti of MIT-D-Lab about the organization’s ANDE-funded project under the Advancing Women’s Empowerment Fund to better prepare female founders seeking capital and support investors in bringing more inclusivity to their practices, including impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the project in India and an upcoming simulation of what it’s like to be a female founder trying to raise $5 million.
Highlights from four ANDE members working in the region.
As the movement towards digital transformation around the world accelerates, we’re exploring how ANDE members are adapting to the digital world - through our new video series ‘Exploring Digitalization Journeys.’
ANDE India has always looked to support its members and the broader entrepreneurial ecosystem in the country by helping facilitate strategic connections and conversations. This showcase highlights two such stories.
SMEs make up a large part of businesses, jobs, and GHG emissions. A concerted effort towards climate action in India has to include how we engage and support small and growing businesses.
In 2020, the Metrics from the Ground Up conference took place as a track alongside the Sankalp Global Summit. The event gave ANDE members and the community in India (and beyond) the chance to meet and share knowledge and best practices on impact measurement and management relevant to entrepreneurial support and the greater impact ecosystem.
This piece is part of a series under the theme of “Elevating Underrepresented Voices at ANDE.”