Our story, the story of forests
We invite you to Forests of Life, a festival, an entire world of experiences! As part of our climate awareness series, the festival seeks to create an inclusive narrative that explores one aspect of nature at a time, beginning with rivers in 2022, and then moving on to other equally fascinating aspects of nature.
In the current festival, we aim to share information on the condition of our forests, both the good and the bad, and to inspire action towards better forest management.
The festival is an immersive and enriching experience that will leave you with a renewed appreciation for our beautiful forests. Here, you can explore and celebrate its wonders through the eyes of storytellers, speakers, students, practitioners, and more.
Engage in fun and educational activities, see thought-provoking movies, and get inspired by positive stories. Don’t miss out on our mesmerising photo exhibition that showcases forests from all around the country, presented by our talented interns and practitioners.
A nationwide search resulted in a large group of interns who explored over 150 diverse forests, each sharing a story of these ancient entities. Their perspectives provide an insightful glimpse into the multifaceted nature of the forest, including foraging for sustenance, navigating post-animal conflict scenarios, and exploring value chains that improve livelihoods.
Some interns, who are forest dwellers themselves, delve into the deep-seated bond that indigenous communities share with nature, examining successful wildlife relocations and paying tribute to individuals making a difference.
To supplement our interns’ efforts, the festival will also feature a plethora of engaging activities such as photo exhibitions, talks, workshops, panel discussions, renditions of folklore, and school and college programmes, allowing you to embark on a journey of discovery and wonder. Keep watching the page for future updates.
Forests are a source of food, medicine, and timber, and provide benefits to man and animal alike. However forests are under threat from increased demands, leading to a decline in the health of fragile areas, escalating stress, and conflicts. Positions of those advocating access for traditional users, and inviolate zones have become increasingly entrenched. Additionally, industries demand more and cheaper access to raw materials, as well as permission for the diversion of forest lands.
In the midst of this gloom, there is a glimmer of hope that forests in India can survive and flourish into the next century. Forests continue to have strong social and cultural linkages with human communities and mainstream religious customs. However, we must act now, for the loss of forests is at stake, and with it, a precious heritage that has existed for millennia.
To address the challenges faced by forests, it is necessary to consider the ownership, use, and management of forests. Can we listen to the needs of indigenous communities who have traditionally depended upon natural resources? Can they be made partners in forest management and continue to protect its resources? Indigenous people, as modern-day guardians, can be pre-eminent defenders of the forest, augmenting the efforts of the solitary forest guard significantly.
As stewards of the land, we have a responsibility to protect and manage forests in a way that balances the needs of different interest groups, including indigenous communities, conservationists, and theatre. By working together, we can ensure that forests continue to be a vital part of our planet’s biodiversity and provide sustenance and shelter for countless species for generations to come.
School students upto senior secondary and college students at the under and post-graduate levels are welcome. We also invite members of the public and parents who wish to explore fun-based forest activities alongside their wards. As the fate of our natural spaces matters even more, it became crucial that we engage with young adults and children on this journey of conservation together. The festival is designed to engage our young.
We are thrilled to be expanding the reach of our festival this year, sharing stories of nature and its elements in two incredible cities. In Bengaluru, where the festival was first conceived, we will be showcasing innovative interactive exhibits to inspire our audience.
In Bhopal — a city that holds a special place in the story of forest conservation — we are excited to invite school and college children not only from the city of lakes, but also from districts that are home to indigenous community members.
Join us between 2 – 14 November at Bengaluru, and in January 2024 at Bhopal, to experience the wonders of the Forests of Life festival.
This festival is a call to everyone to save our forests. Festivals can be powerful tools for raising awareness and promoting consciousness. They act as nuclei to bring together diverse stakeholders, including NGOs, government agencies, businesses, and communities, to collaborate and share ideas for forest conservation.
As a platform for showcasing educational exhibits, films, talks, and workshops, the enthusiastic response from students during the Rivers of Life festival inspired us to take a festival path to highlight the importance of forests, the challenges they face, and the ways in which individuals can help protect them. Interactive exhibits, installations, and activities can help people engage more deeply with the subject matter.
As a unique design installation on its own, Forests of Life adopts a wayfinding philosophy that considers every aspect of the design, from the choice of materials to the placement of each element, to ensure that it is visually striking and enhances the overall aesthetic of our campus, inspired by the forests of India.
Our focus is on a functional, visually appealing, and eco-friendly approach.
The festival seeks to continuously engage and learn along with the attendees. We are committed to sustainability principles and are currently exploring various alternative options.
We have made it our top priority to use locally sourced materials or sustainable alternatives wherever possible. We also seek to provide educational resources and materials to raise awareness about sustainable practices.