Enthusiastic Krishna and her Kitchen Garden
Krishna Mavasi is very vocal about the issues of malnutrition and problems of her own village Jhiriya ghat. Jhiriya ghat falls under Kailhora Panchayat of Majhganva block district Satna. She has completed her 10th and came in this village after marriage. IT is a typical village constitutes with Yadav and Mavasi tribes. Her husband Lalu Mavasi – 28, is a marginal farmer with a small land holding and lives in a joint family. Now her both the children are studying in school. There are 7 members in her family. Her daughter Gayatri studying in some boarding school at Chitrkoot. Mostly the family is dependent on labour work as the land is not adequate. They have an AAY Card and use to get 35 Kg ration from PDS. Though they have 6 acre land but 3 acre is almost baron land as there was no water to irrigate.
Lalu and his brothers work in farm but the production is not good, hence they migrate on seasonal basis to earn. In last Kharif crop they produced 50 kg Sesame seeds, after saving 10 kg they sold rest 440 Kg and earned Rs 4000/-. Due to heavy rains the crop was affected badly. She used the money for education of children, grocery and medicines, she had saved Rs 2500/- for Rabi crop.
Krishna is secretary of Dastak group formed by project team. The group works for health, education , nutrition and livelihood , every month there would be a meeting and women discuss about the problems and learn from each other. In one of the meetings, the group was told about Kitchen garden, how small initiative can be a boon in eradicating malnutrition from village and also help in earning. She was motivated and thought to experiment, as tow small girls were malnourished in her home. Chandani was also admitted in NRC but improvement was not up to the mark. She got various vegetable seeds from project and sown in her backyard. Surprisingly the result was very good, there was more than enough production of 7 – 8 types for a family, this resulted in change in food, now there were more vegetables in platter and the family was enjoying free vegetables. She fed her children and used vegetables for malnourished daughters. Results were overwhelming, the daughters became healthy.
Krishna owns a small house where in they dug a small well for water. Due to availability of water they decided to sow more vegetables and along with her sister in law Dulari bai hey have sown vegetables now for commercial purpose in 2 Beegha. They bought seeds from KVK and market. “we would irrigate the land with same well, but water pump we had to hire on rent basis”. We did hard work and grew lots of vegetables in the land. “Most difficult task was to fence the land but we did it” – says Dulari.
We would also distribute vegetables to some poor families and rest we would sell. We would earn Rs 300 to 400 a day and also start selling in vicinity. Time was good and we were quite optimistic for future. But suddenly Covid 19 spread brought a black page in our life. Lock down has broken our spinal cord – all were jobless and there was no hope. There was no hard cash and no ration in houses, poor community was most vulnerable among all as there were no outlets to earn. Mobility was jammed and hence all were stuck in homes. Children were victims of this lock down. Things were very expensive and out of reach, this enhanced nutritional issues in families.
After observing this pandemic and severe conditions, Krishna talked to her family and decided to support the families in some ways. She distributed Free Vegetables to such families – especially where small children and pregnant women were residing. She supported all 60 families in her village and 150 in vicinity. “ I supported them because they all are from my village and due to this pandemic things were deteriorated badly, severe hunger was seen in families, at least by providing vegetables I could contribute to a cause” Says Krishna. She served honestly and diligently and gave away 700 Kg vegetables free. Also earned Rs 8000/- by sell.
As show casing her work and enthusiasm Project team displayed her work on social media, a twit became so famous that Chief Minister Shivraj Singh re-twitted the same. After this twit, people came to about her service and the member of parliament Ganesh Singh visited her home and appreciated her work. She told about the problems of village, immediately an extra bore well was sanctioned for village. She and her family lost lot of things in pandemic but she is hopeful for future. Now project team is supporting her and in order to construct her well pucca, work is on progress.
Krishna is happy and looking forward for better opportunities and future. She is determined to eradicate Malnutrition from her village. She says “if I can help people by giving vegetables and eradicate curse of malnutrition, then I am convinced fully, I don’t need money but people must grow vegetables and this is the easiest thing which they can do”. Krishna is a role model for other women.