Avani is a voluntary organization working in the Kumaon region of Uttaranchal, located in the middle ranges of the Central Himalayas. The villages are isolated in one of the highest mountain ranges of the world.
Avani has tried to rethink the relationship of individuals with resources and seeks to make technology and livelihoods contiguous within the household. To this end they have revived the techniques of natural dyeing, spinning, and weaving which are found in the area. The region is close to the Tibet border and so shows considerable cross cultural influence.
Avani has also initiated work on developing and disseminating appropriate technologies for meeting the energy and water requirements of the villages. This involves the introduction of solar power. In addition the youth are trained as technicians. Providing communities with grid-independent power creates a demand for skilled labour, and this demand is met locally.
Avani is also a founder member of the World Mountain Peoples' Association, which strives to develop solutions to the problems, influence policies in favor of the mountain communities, and bring them together on a common platform.