THEORY OF CHANGE
Revive Kashmir’s vision is to see an economically developed community of Kashmiris. We believe that such a vision can be achieved by working on our three mission elements:
Facilitate knowledge and competence via capacity building and skills development
Foster a strong business ecosystem through strategic collaborations, innovative delivery models, positive work culture changes, and thought leadership
Enable access to markets, capital, technology, and networks
KNOWLEDGE ECONOMY & ENTREPRENEURSHIP NETWORK (KEEN)
In an opinion piece titled “Making Entrepreneurship Contagious” in Knowledge@Wharton, Rottenberg and Bierly demonstrate that the best incubator for entrepreneurship occurs when entrepreneurs form close networks and nurture fellow risk-takers with their experience and resources. The physical network of entrepreneurs will have a virtual incubation space through connections on social media. Revive Kashmir has formed a Facebook group called Knowledge Economy and Entrepreneurial Network Kashmir (KEEN Kashmir) to nurture and strengthen the cause of general entrepreneurship and create a vibrant knowledge based private sector in Kashmir.
The purpose of the group is to:
Ultimately, this virtual incubator will translate into physical incubator and accelerator spaces in Kashmir where local entrepreneurs can use common services, resources, guidance, and mentorship to help them establish and grow their start-ups.
In addition to promoting a culture of entrepreneurship through our training workshops and cohorting process, Revive Kashmir has rolled out a grassroots “pay it forward” interest free capital injection effort to enable micro-businesses. After the floods of 2014 that devastated Kashmir’s economy, we started helping small businesses by providing them with interest free loans to recover tools of production that were destroyed in the floods and bridge gaps in their working capital needs. Typical recipients have a livelihood centered around an auto-rickshaw, poultry farm, supply of dairy, a fruit cart, or something similar. These small businesses typically return the qarz-e-hasnah interest-free loan within a year and the returned money is loaned to more small businesses, creating a self-reinforcing cycle of small amounts of capital enabling multiple grassroots small businesses.
We also believe in empowering disadvantaged individuals who are left out of the workforce due to disabilities like visual impairment. Project Noor (“light”) focuses on uplifting visually impaired individuals by training them with a variety of skills they need to re-enter the workforce. We also equip them with tools so that they can learn to become self-sufficient over time and live dignified lives.
All these projects are geared to enable small and medium businesses, equip them with knowledge and tools, and help nurture a community of entrepreneurs. This fuels economic development and spreads prosperity and wealth for a better and just society.