Sowing Seeds of Hope with SALONI and Chintan
At the start of 2021, SALONI worked with environmental research and action group – Chintan, to improve access to nutrition for women and girls amongst some of Delhi’s most marginalised communities.
The project aimed to work with 700 women from Delhi’s waste-picker communities to give them the tools to both grow and cook highly nutritious foods, like microgreens and vegetables. The women would otherwise not have access to these resources. As, Bharati Chaturvedi, founder and director of Chintan, reflects:
“Hunger is a form of systemic violence against women. Addressing this bias is a fundamental part of broader action to mitigate climate change and promote the circular economy.”
The project was implemented with very specific local knowledge and an understanding of how certain foods, like tomatoes, have luxury connotations. Such vegetables are often monopolised and eaten solely by male family members. Instead the project focused on microgreens as well as sprouts, which also have high nutritional value. Chaturvedi adds, “The men don’t touch sprouts and raw food!”
SALONI and Chintan worked with the participants to establish kitchen gardens in or around their homes to grow microgreens, such as easy-to-grow mustard seeds that are enzyme rich. Cooking lessons were also provided for the participants to gain knowledge on how to maximise nutritional value from the vegetables. To assess the impact of the project, Chintan also used various tools, overseen by medical and nutritional experts, to monitor the health of all the women who participated in the project.
Click here to learn more about Chintan’s environmental research and action group.