Title frame with purple frame and black tag on the bottom left of the frame. Tag shows logo and reads SEDDS OF KNOWLEDGE. In the white space, an image on the left shows branded soap and loofah products from SITTI. Text on right reads: Meet the founders of SITTI: a social enterprise.
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Lilac frame with black tag in the bottom left with website details. Text in centre of frame reads: Featuring Mixed Media Artist + Illustrator: Parmeet Arora Bori. 3 images from the calendar are placed around the text.
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Jaagde Raho: Strengthening a Nation through Collective Intelligence

Title image with lilac frame and black tag on the bottom left with website details. In the white space an image on the left is an outline map of Panjab illustrated in watercolour hues of orange and purple. Text on map reads Jaagde Raho (Stay Woke) in Panjabi. Text on right reads: Meet the founder of Jaagde Raho: a social change maker



The issues faced by farmers did not end with the repeal of the 3 farm laws.

As a larger Sikh community, we often have a reactionary urge to provide charitable aid whenever necessary. And yet, the narratives about us, are usually told without us. We witnessed this with the year-long Langar – a true community kitchen to feed all and eradicate hunger on the streets of Delhi during the Farmer Protests. If not for grassroots journalism, the truth behind the intention, would have been limited to an action that’s almost become expected in times of need.

Movements are often viewed as momentary events, but instead they can fuel long-term goals for those engaged in impactful social change. Jaagde Raho is one such organization that recognized that need and now leads sustainable action through The Green Pind Project.

Please join me in welcoming Harmeet Mann of CreativeMannCo, the Founder of Jaagde Raho.

outline map of Panjab in watercolour hues of orange and purple. Text is in Panjabi and reads Jaagde Raho.

©Jaagde Raho 2021

NAVJOT: You raised your voice throughout the year-long farmer protests and have now launched a social change community project: Jaagde Raho. What do you feel are the most urgent factors to help understand and mend a fragmented Panjab?

HARMEET: Looking at the social determinants of health (SDH) framework, often used in public health, we know that educational access and quality, healthcare and quality, neighborhood and environment, social and community context, and economic stability are the factors that influence an individual’s or community’s wellbeing. Most of rural Punjab is not faring well in any of these areas. We have used this framework to guide our work and the 5 factors of SDH are the 5 factors we want to address in order to uplift an oppressed Punjab at the grassroots level. Our Green Pind projects is focused on improving the built environment in rural areas, addressing depletion of water levels, quality of water, underground sewage, waste filtration, and beautification of the village.

NAVJOT: How has the Farmers Protest shifted a stagnant generation to mobilize and pivot the direction of Panjab: its people and its land?

HARMEET: The silver lining of the farmers protest is that it was able to awaken a sleeping Punjab and diaspora. Those of us born outside of Punjab, who were never interested in Punjab politics, have now become advocates for their own people. They have become re-involved with our history, heritage, and our community more than one way. There were college students who put together fundraisers; there were youth who created art and designed social media posts. There were young adults who reached out to their elected officials. Others were involved in organizing protests and rallies and even went as far as to join the protest site in Delhi.

While we have lost a lot in the protest in the past year, we can’t ignore that we have gained this lifelong ignition, that an entire generation won’t forget. And we are now using it to continue the necessary conversations and work to improve quality of life for both native and diaspora Punjabi communities.


4 calendar cards from our 2022 limited edition calendar. January shows a wreath illustration - all green hues. February has a pink background with an illustration of activist Naudeep Kaur in the bottom right. April is a lilac card with leaves and foliage design. June card has a grey background and an illustration of a Sikh family's embrace in the bottom right. All 4 cards are placed randomly on a neutral background.

©Saffron Press 2022

NAVJOT: How are the projects by Jaagde Raho moving beyond charitable aid, and more towards a sustainable future for Panjab?

HARMEET: Jaagde Raho is an organization founded on the belief that we, the people of Punjab, are enough to solve the crises that our land and people face, without any political dependence. It is then important that any of our interventions be community based and sustainable. We don’t want to apply a band-aid fix to problems, which is why we are implementing research-based projects, rather than providing aid. Additionally, most of our team (80%) consists of volunteers based in Punjab, and all of our Punjab based project leads (5 volunteers) are stipended, as to ensure their time is compensated, making for more sustainable volunteerism. Any of the projects we implement are also designed in mind to be as hands-off or self-sufficient as possible, whether it be our Punjabi Business Directory running on automations or our Green Pind project incorporating solar power, and water level recharge.

NAVJOT: One of your first projects is The Green Pind Project. You explain in a video that Panjab’s drinking water is already contaminated with heavy metals and groundwater is becoming depleted. Panjab is predicted to be a desert state in 20 years or less. How will the Green Pind Project address the needs in a way that will create sustainable action?

HARMEET: In our Green Pind Project, we have prioritized buy-in of the villagers. We are choosing a project lead that lives in the pilot pind itself, and we are documenting our work in a project guide so that it is replicable by other individuals and organizations who want to do similar work in their own villages. In providing the clean water, for example, our borewell will be operated on solar and water will be transported via underground pipes to each household so that each house has access to clean, running water. The water will be recharged via rainwater harvesting and filtration. There will also be a four step wastewater filtration system, a project that the government is funding, in our pilot pind. Wastewater will be filtered for non-consumption use, further addressing water waste and depletion.


Art print from 2022 limited edition calendar. Art shows an elder Panjabi farmer as she tills the land. An outline map behind her shows her using regenerative farming methods on the left and the land on the right has become a desert state due to pesticide overuse and water depletion. Spices from India frame this card.

©Saffron Press 2022


NAVJOT: Why do you believe ‘collective intelligence’ is the solution to Panjab’s systemic oppression? How can we get involved?

HARMEET: I believe that collective intelligence and effort of the Punjabi community is the answer to uplifting Punjab because the same systems (governments) that are responsible for its oppression can’t be trusted with it’s upliftment. We have professors, researchers, agriculture analysts, community advocates, health professionals, educators, donors and much more expertise in our community, that if facilitated, can be enough to fix some of the immediate issues in Punjab, like water contamination or joblessness.

Harmeet, thank you for your time! I was thrilled to find an organization focused on sustainable change.


A portion of sales for our 2022 limited edition calendar will support the work of The Green Pind Project and provide clean water to households in this pilot project. Please join us in changing the narrative of Panjab.


If you would like to get involved with Jaagde Raho, please visit their site to learn more.


Image of Navjot Kaur with thank you message for supporting a small, independent press. There is a green frame around the text with a black tag in the bottom left. Text on black tag shows website address and hashtag #WhereStoriesGrow. Small logo in gold. Navjot is wearing a white top and some of her long black hair is placed over her left shoulder.

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