innocent donates 10% of its profits each year to charity, primarily to the innocent foundation, which is a separate registered charity we set up a couple of years ago.
The foundation in turn supports a number of community based projects and NGOs. One such organisation is called Find Your Feet. We've been working with them for 2 years and have just agreed a further 3 years funding from this year. Good news.
Savitri manages all their work on the ground in India and she came over for a visit the other day. She gave us an update on how the money that you spend on our drinks is being put to good use.
Savitri at Fruit Towers
One thing Find Your Feet are doing is funding an organisation called Pepus – working with 30 villages and over 550 disadvantaged people in Uttar Pradesh, helping them to set up stable livelihoods and increase crop yields. Hundreds more people are benefiting from Pepus’ work in the villages to promote education and raise awareness of health related issues.
An example of someone we've helped is Babata. She's from one of five families living in Ramnagar village who came together to take a joint loan from Pepus to buy an irrigation pump and pay for labour costs. The pump has now been installed and the families have been trained in maintaining the equipment.
Before, the men from the five families had to migrate in search of work. However, they now plan to stay in the village as they are able to farm all year round and earn a good income.
Babata (left) and crops
Babata says “Before, we weren’t able to grow anything in this season because it was too dry. With our small plot of land, we could only grow one harvest of pulses a year. And that was it. Now, we can grow crops all year round and we have a variety – vegetables, paddy and fodder. We are now growing enough to sell part of our harvest to earn a profit.”
I don't know about you, but I feel genuinely good knowing that the money we make helps people's lives get a bit better. The fact that the men don't have to leave the village and so can stay at home with their families...that's a very very good thing.
Anyway, we'll carry on updating you with bits and pieces as we get them. In the mean time, large thanks to Savitri, pictured below with some of the villagers.
Savitri and the villagers