Welspun Living Inititavies in Envoirment Social & Governance

The Equal Stock Initiative - Highlighting Women in Farming


Empowering Female Farmers: The Equal Stock Initiative

In the online world, a simple search for "farmer" yields a deluge of images, but a closer look reveals a glaring disparity. Women contribute to around 40% of the global agricultural workforce. When it comes to India, that figure sits at 75% and is constantly increasing as the men migrate to urban regions in search of gainful employment, leaving the women in charge of agricultural duties. Despite this, the representation women receive in images and media is shockingly low. This underrepresentation not only paints an inaccurate picture of the agricultural landscape but also perpetuates the marginalization of women farmers. 

While such underrepresentation of women is prevalent across industries, it is especially visible in India’s agricultural sector and the general perception of society. When people think farmers, they think of rugged and hard-working men. Women don’t feature in this romanticized perspective of the Indian farmer. Despite their immense contributions to the field of agriculture, women face discrimination when it comes to land ownership, access to credit and participation in decision-making.

To address this disparity, Welspun Living has come up with a unique initiative on the occasion of International Women’s Day—the EqualStock Initiative.

What is the EqualStock initiative?

This groundbreaking project aims to address the gender disparity in farming images on the internet by flooding stock image libraries with high-quality photographs of women farmers. These images, captured by Welspun World from the company’s partner farms, are available for free download on all leading online platforms.

Combating the Bias through Algorithm Optimization

The Equal Stock initiative goes beyond simply making images available. Welspun Living is actively working to ensure these images reach a wider audience by employing strategic tactics. Through the use of relevant keywords and collaborations with media partners, Welspun Living is pushing these images higher up in search engine algorithms. This will ultimately lead to a more accurate and balanced portrayal of women farmers in the online space.-

Key Facts:

  • Women farmers constitute approximately 75% of India's full-time agricultural workforce, yet they are significantly underrepresented online.
  • The Equal Stock initiative provides free access to high-quality images of women farmers in all major online stock image libraries.
  • Welspun Living is working to change the online search algorithm by encouraging media players to utilize Equal Stock images.
  • The initiative's impactful photography is captured by Welspun World.

Why is this initiative needed?

The internet, with its vast image libraries, serves as a window into the world. Yet, when it comes to Indian agriculture, this window presents a distorted view. A simple search for "farmer" throws up countless images, but a closer look reveals a troubling truth: women are largely missing from the picture.

This absence is far from reality. As discussed above, women farmers constitute the backbone of India's agricultural sector, comprising a staggering 75% of the full-time workforce. Despite their undeniable contribution, their online presence remains minimal. This underrepresentation has significant consequences:

  • Inaccurate Perception: The lack of images showcasing women farmers paints an incomplete and inaccurate picture of Indian agriculture. It reinforces the misconception that farming is a male-dominated domain, neglecting the crucial role women play.
  • Marginalization Amplified: Limited online visibility further marginalizes women farmers. It hinders their access to resources, information, and opportunities often discovered through online channels.
  • A Missed Inspiration: The absence of positive role models online can discourage young women from pursuing careers in agriculture. Seeing themselves reflected in the digital landscape can be a powerful motivator for aspiring women farmers.

The Equal Stock initiative tackles these issues head-on. By providing a comprehensive collection of high-quality images featuring women farmers, Equal Stock aims to rectify the online narrative and empower these often-overlooked individuals.

The Equal Stock initiative echoes Welspun’s efforts and its continued commitment to women empowerment. Welspun Living has led by example and shed light on the efforts and importance of women in the workforce in various ways. For instance, the SPUN, a Welspun initiative that empowers communities of craftswomen from Bhuj who were impacted by the devastating earthquake in 2001. The initiative is designed to give them opportunities to gain financial independence by crafting sustainable materials for Welspun Living’s textile products.

Another initiative spearheaded by Welspun Living CEO Dipali Goenka is the Women of Welspun initiative. As a part of this initiative, all women employees associated with Welspun Living received mentorship from Ms. Dipali Goenka, alongside efforts by the company to cover four major segments.These segments include a community support system, an upskilling program, an engagement platform and a talent recognition system. The Women of Welspun Program is a holistic initiative by Welspun Living to help women build their profiles and find more opportunities suited to their talents.

With the Equal Stock Initiative, Welspun Living adds yet another feather to its cap along the road to a brighter future that promises equal opportunity and visibility for women in professional spaces. Welspun Living is continuing to push the envelope for women entrepreneurs and professionals across the country and building a platform for them to enjoy the limelight with dignity and equality.