The phrase ‘Vocal for Local’ gained momentum a few months ago, and the results today have been astonishing. The ‘Vocal for Local’ campaign caught the fame, recognition, and acceptance when it was endorsed by the government. The campaign also received the much-needed institutional support.
The goal of the campaign is to support as many local businesses as possible. One of the advantages of ‘vocal for local’ is that it would provide micro, small, and medium enterprises/businesses a unique identity with which they could grow.
If you are into manufacturing business, going vocal for local for you would be deciding to sell your products through small vendors. If you are a consumer, the best way you could go local would be to buy from local, nearby vendors instead of shopping from big shopping markets.
Here are a few ways in which we could support our local vendors and talented artisans by providing them a platform to showcase their talents.
Buy from paas wali dukaan
Buy your regular groceries from your local vendors. You get relatively new and fresh goods from these small places. Buying from small vendors builds a sense of trust and bond in each other. Here, you help them earn their daily bread, improve their lifestyle in the long run. When you spend your money buying from huge supermarket giants, you help them buy a new house or buy a new car. These small vendors are more likely to trust and help you in the long run.
Buy your vegetables and fruits from local farmer markets or street carts. They cost you less and the goods are fresh, sometimes right from the farms. These farmers and vendors earn daily wages; by buying from them, you would help them run their families and give them employment.
Clothing and accessories
Buy clothes whose materials are locally sourced and made in India. Buy them from your local textile stores and stick to sustainable fabrics. Kurtis and Sarees from Khadi are 100% made in and sourced from India. If you are unable to buy something near you, look up online, several initiatives like this are present online. They are easy on you, the planet, and the people who make them. You are giving our local artists to showcase the rich talent and heritage of the country. Amazon India has come up with a new platform to help and support local artisans called Amazon Karigar. You could buy traditional cloths from local artisans across the country anytime, anywhere!
Accessorize your clothing with ear-rings and handbags that are made by our artists. Hang bags and ear-rings have beautiful tribal and folk art on them. Embrace the ethnicity of the country by allowing our artists to express themselves. Get your clothes stitched or altered from local tailoring shops or boutiques.
Home Décor and makeup
If you are someone who is into home decors and interiors, you could buy your decor items from local stores and antique shops. These décor items are made in India and represent the state-of-the-art heritage of our ancestors. You could even purchase old décor items and upcycle them.
Look up and you might find local furniture markets near you. These local furniture markets usually sell one-of-a kind designs that are mostly handmade. For example, Banjara Market in Delhi is quite famous for home décor and unique furniture. The market is hosted by the local Banjara Tribe.
Go to your local salons for your hair care and beauty. They cost less and, you get a wide range of options as well. There are several small businesses online like Valuearth, Bamboo India, Ancient Living that sell grooming and beauty products from indigenously sourced materials. These small businesses provide employment to local and tribal artists. Big corporate beauty chains are often headquartered in a different country; we are not only paying them hefty sums, but also contributing to their country’s economy.
We are all fascinated with foreign tourist destinations and cuisines. But how many of have really tried to visit places in India that are unique and historical. Most of these places are underrated and wouldn’t appear on your google search. But researching on them would only build your curiosity. There are artisans in the country who are not appreciated enough for their skills and historic heritage. Travel indigenously before going international. It helps the economy, local artists and you learn more about the motherland.
India is known for its collection of spices. Food has always been a great part our culture and tradition. Indian food menu if different in each state; our food is designed and prepared by understanding the importance of each spice and ingredient that goes into it. Eat at local restaurants and help them grow. We have Traditional restaurants that provide lip smacking delicious food, no matter how small the hotel/restaurant might look, the taste is heavenly.
Don’t just buy from these local vendors, promote them. Help them set up an online presence for their stores, support and promote them on social media, pass on good words about them. It would help them grow bigger and employ hundreds of other employees like them. It would enable artists and vendors a platform to reach out to several other people out there.
We saw the response a single social media post about ‘Baba ka Dhaba’ got. If a single post on social media praising a local store could get them such a lot of business, imagine how high fast could our local stores grow. The power of social media is inevitable, let us use it to support our local brands and stores.
These are a few tips on how we could promote our local vendors and help them improve their quality of life. Helping them grow would be good for the community and the country. It is when we truly become self-reliant.