Many of us who work in a bustling city, confined to small cubicles, have at least once entertained the idea of leaving it all behind and residing in a quaint hut surrounded by nature.
A 25-year-old from Gujarat has been living this dream in Gir Forest. He lives in a mud house, grows his own vegetables, and hosts workshops for youth.
Growing up in Junagadh, Siddharth Kubavat always dreamt of getting into IIT. He started his preparations quite early in his academic career.
“Even though I spent two years mugging my syllabus and trying to meet the required competencies, there came a time when I realised that I could not spend even a minute of my life doing that anymore,” he says.
“I felt that these institutes are producing machines rather than humans, and I wanted to study a machine and not be one!” he recalls.
So by the time he finished schooling, Siddharth was left without a passion to follow. So he took a year off to find his real calling and stumbled upon a natural farming workshop.
“It gave me hope that this might help me to find myself; staying in close proximity to nature helped me with this,” he says.
He adds, “I volunteered for every natural farming and permaculture workshop in India which kept my interest alive.”
This inspired him so much that he decided to make a living out of it. So in 2020, he purchased farmland in the Gir Forest.
Calling his farm ‘The Joy Jungle’, Siddharth has hosted over eight residential workshops, teaching over 36 youngsters.
He gives them an introduction to living on a farm and teaches them the basics of growing food.
Besides taking workshops, he also gives consultancy services to help people who want to grow food organically.
“It is not hard at all to live on a farm if you ask me. We are born with the instinct to survive in nature. It is we who created all these big buildings and machines and made our lives complex. Every day at the farm is unique and engrossing,” says Siddharth.