The Brokpa Collective
The yak herding Monpas are called Brokpas. Brokpa literally translates to 'Brok' meaning pasture or highlands and 'Pa' meaning people - people of the highlands. Brokpas are the last semi nomadic yak herders of the Eastern Himalayas living in Arunachal Pradesh, India. Brokpas follow mobile transhumant herding which is seasonal movement with the livestock between pastures at different altitudes. Yak is an asset to the rural economy of the yak rearing Brokpas, sacred and central to their cultural and social identities.
However the Brokpas are facing multiple challenges like geopolitical barriers, temperature rise, degradation of high-altitude pastures, shortage of fodder, dwindling of the pure yak population, and a gradually shortening winter subsequently leading to a decline in the local yak economy.
Under this collective, we are mobilising a collective of yak herders at three pilot sites with partner organisations. Our mission is to valorise the use of yak fiber to create low carbon artisanal fashion that supports the regenerative yak herding practices of the nomadic Brokpas, enhances income opportunities in traditional yak herding, and conserves the local biodiversity.
The project was recipient of 'People's Choice Award' at the UN SDSN Youth Solution Program - Innovation Readiness Program 2022. The cohort brought 50 global social start ups working towards advancing Sustainable Development Goals through their work.