Tara is an Expat living in Mumbai. She loves our Dharavi Health and Nutrition Project and volunteered to write a short report about her experience while attending the last session on 6th October 2012. She will also create a cook book together with Nutritionists of FMCH. Read here about her Day in Dharavi:
FMCH runs a weekly clinics at the Reality Gives’ community centre in Dharavi on Saturday afternoons. On alternate Saturdays a cooking demonstration is held or a talk about issues the participants would like to discuss. This Saturday was cooking time! The knowledgeable and energetic Sneha Rout, a FMCH nutritionist, led last Saturday’s cooking demonstration. Four mothers with their numerous children gathered round to listen and learn about the recipes Sneha was preparing with the help of Nanda Goregaokar, a part-time FMCH cook. Nazia and Sangeeta, Library and Youth Empowerment Program teachers with Reality Gives helped facilitate the clinic, providing water, cleaning cooking utensils and managing the crowd of children who had gathered. They both are from Dharavi as well and know the attending women and children very well. Most of them participated in other projects of Reality Gives before.
This week’s nutritious menu included beetroot milkshake, ragi upma and coconut, sesame and peanut ladoos. Whilst Sneha chopped and prepared the food, she engaged with each mother, explaining to them the nutritional quality of the ingredients, such as beetroot and sesame seed, and made the demonstration an interactive and fun event. As the mothers are illiterate, Sneha encouraged them to repeat back to her the recipes both whilst the food was being prepared and also afterwards so to help the mothers remember the recipes.
Once the full meal was complete, Sneha and Nanda shared the milkshake, upma and ladoos amongst the children and mother. Everyone agreed the food was delicious!
Afterwards the nutritionists and teachers came together with the attending mothers to discuss the health and nutrition status of their children and how they can improve it or how it already got improved since the program started. The overall opinion is that till now mostly the cooking skills and nutrition knowledge of the mothers increased. For a review of the health status of the kids it needs more time and a regular attendance.
Read more about the FMCH program in Dharavi on our website.