When the pandemic struck, I found myself staring at screens for several hours every day. I felt the urge to engage in something effective and started a vegetable garden in my front yard. I began with growing simple vegetables like onions, tomatoes, chilies, and coriander for these were easily available at home.
I was thrilled when the shoots first appeared. I got more engrossed. My neighbours and my brother started assisting me and within a month, I could see my hard work bear fruit, in this case vegetables. 😊
Here’s when the idea behind Planting Hopes was implanted on my mind. With the pandemic in full swing and with most people working from home, my idea turned into a neighbourhood project. Everyone was contributing, sharing ideas, and planting vegetables in their tiny gardens.
I decided to help some people in need in my vicinity with the vegetables I was growing in my garden.
Starting my own vegetable garden brought me closer to my community. Gardening also gave me a sense of inner peace and calm. I loved how my small acts connected me with Mother Earth and my neighbours.
25th of June 2021 was one of the most memorable days of my life. The prestigious Changemaker Project, a social justice leadership program invested $1150 in my venture.
Since then, there has been no looking back. With the funds I received, I gave wings to my modest ideas and improved them with each passing day. The responsibility that now lay on my shoulders to serve people and the community was massive and I had to make my initiatives a roaring success. I started helping people affected by poverty and malnutrition.
I found 4 different barren lands around my home and started cultivating them for vegetables. My community vegetable gardens grew bigger with 300 people working alongside us to encourage my ideas. We grew bottle gourd, ridge gourd, ladyfinger, cowpea, pumpkin, spinach, onion, and much more.
I conducted several microgreens workshops to help underprivileged women lead self-sustainable lives by selling microgreens. With Project Microtopia, my aim was to combine and achieve two UN goals: promote sustainability through female empowerment and leadership.
I conducted a workshop where I instructed 50 underprivileged women on how beneficial microgreens are and the importance of using them in our daily diets. In order to make their endeavors cost-efficient and eco-friendly, we decided to grow these microgreens in milk bags, which also promoted the recycling and reuse of plastic.
This program was efficiently executed with minimal resources and supplies and we were able to grow mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, coriander seeds, fennel seeds, peanuts, and several pulses like Bengal gram, black-eyed beans, cowpeas, and green gram in various houses.
Did you know these awesome benefits of microgreens?
Microgreens are vegetable greens, not to be confused with sprouts shoots. They are consumed immediately after sprouting, rather than after the plant has matured to produce leaves. They are used as a nutrition supplement and a flavor and texture enhancement. They are rich in aromatic flavors and possess highly condensed nutrient contents.
“There’s so much pollution in the air now that if it weren’t for our lungs there’d be no place to put it all.” ~ Robert Orben
During the pandemic, we realized the cost and importance of Oxygen.
Every human has the right to clean, fresh air. This thought compelled me to act by distributing some of the highest oxygen-giving plants to more than 100 people in my community and thereby also promoting my love for nature.
Do you know, according to NASA, snake plants produce the highest amounts of oxygen?
Empower underprivileged women to start and maintain vegetable gardens to lead self-sustainable lives and help and inspire others in need. We all can bring about change…all it takes is a determination to make change happen!
Educating underprivileged women and helping them become self-sufficient.