Vanastree: Women of the Forest is a documentary film that seeks to share not only the inner workings of the Vanastree seed-saving cooperative, but also the voices and perspectives of its members. It follows Manorama Joshi, a seed-leader, entrepreneur and co-founder of the cooperative who reaches out to new members and keeps the spirit of the cooperative high; Sunita Rao, the director and co-founder of Vanastree whose vision continues to inspire those around her; Shyamala Hegde who works to preserve bio-diversity and educate others in her region; and many more.
These women are the heart of Vanastree and also the core of this story. The film focuses on their lives, concerns, dreams, hopes, and accomplishments, as told by each woman. It also presents the efforts, challenges and successes of Vanastree as the group works to generate critical solutions to regional problems and improve local communities. At its core, this film is about hardship and perseverance, environmental challenges and conservation, women who are relegated to their homes and women who are working for change. This is a film about empowerment and a way forward.