Where it all began
A close encounter with hunger and malnutrition in tribal villages of Northern Orissa in 1998 compelled our founder, Debjeet Sarangi, to search for ways to respond to the existing scarcity of food and nutrition. Having been intimately associated with tribals in Orissa for over eight years, he tried to look for solutions closer to rural life. The main goal was to discover solutions which would improve the availability of food and nutrition at household level, and reduce malnutrition related deaths in villages. This search led him to work as a farmer under the guidance of an experienced teacher of ecological agriculture for one year.
Soon, Living Farms became a reality and was founded in 2005. Living Farms works with landless agricultural laborers, marginal, small farmers, forest dependent communities and Adivasis on issues related to food security and sovereignty. The organization is based at Odisha in the Eastern part of India. This region is particularly vulnerable to food insecurity and malnutrition being home to some of the poorest communities in the world. About 90% of the communities in the region that Living Farms works with are below the national poverty line.
Living Farms envisages forest dependent communities, landless farmers, and Adivasi groups living their lives in dignity by being able to fight against hunger and malnutrition. We imagine a future where communities will use organic, sustainable practices to bring in food sovereignty, conserve and regenerate forests, reorient themselves towards traditional agricultural wisdom and practices establishing their age-old linkages with the forest ecosystems, preserving the fabric of community living and culture.