by  Deepa Parameswaran  | Feb 4, 2019 |

  • We were able to install 4 chulas at the end
    1 week ago by smokelesscookstove_team We were able to install 4 chulas at the end of second day at Khor village. Lots more house holds have kept their donuts ready and we will return to the village after a week to help them install these chulas. Our plan is to make sure that every house in this village gets a Smokeless chulah before the monsoons. We need passionate volunteers to help us with this work. If you are a Mumbai or a Thane resident, do write to us if you wish to volunteer on this project. Visit our website to check the volunteering opportunities or
  • Our donut factory is up and running in the villages
    6 days ago by smokelesscookstove_team Our donut factory is up and running in the villages of Dediapada, Gujarat! We are hoping to see our Smokeless chulahs burning smokelessly for these Vasava tribes residing in Narmada district in the state of Gujarat. This project is being executed in collaboration with Sparsh Trust and Jeevan Tirth, grass roots NGO based in Gujarat.  #ngo   #smokelesscookstoverevolution   #Gujarat   #diy 
  • We started our Smokeless Cookstove training program at Khor village
    2 weeks ago by smokelesscookstove_team We started our Smokeless Cookstove training program at Khor village in Shahpur, Thane! Our lead trainers  @ralph_sirius  and  @mukundarpanashram_  were able to swiftly go through the donut making process with the village women as these women are super excited for our smokeless mud chulahs! Inspite of extremely high temperatures, we were able to prepare the building blocks for 6 chulahs within a matter of few hours! Clearly, any kind of social impact solution can be effective if there is participation and acceptance from the beneficiary communities.  #smokelesscookstoverevolution   #ngo   #maharashtra 
  • A mud chulah holds a much deeper significance in the
    2 weeks ago by smokelesscookstove_team A mud chulah holds a much deeper significance in the lives of homes who still use them for cooking! It represents culture, food and it's taste, cooking behaviours, traditions and native practices. It is a symbol of a family unit spearheaded by woman who is the master of the kitchen! Our  #smokelesscookstoverevolution  program is an effort to simply improve the efficiency of mud chulah and making it as Smokeless as possible using the principal of Rocket Stove Technology. This does not take away the essence of food being cooked on a mud chulah but surely provides relief to the women
  • Khor is a beautiful village with a small population of
    2 weeks ago by smokelesscookstove_team 'Khor' is a beautiful village with a small population of about 250 people in 50 house holds! Falling under Shahpur tensil in Thane, it's interestingly located on the foothills of Mahuli fort! Being a hilly area, these villagers grapple with the issue of water supply as the rain water flows away and they are unable to store it. Since they are completely dependent on a good monsoon for the entire year, these Thakur tribes are already looking nervous about the impending water shortage and a below average monsoon prediction. We will be working in this village for the next three
  • Imagine all the people,
  • Sharing all the world
  • You may say I’m a dreamer
  • But I’m not the only one…

There’s Nitisha too and many more who I would like to know of in this beauty of life! We both primarily bond on this common interest to share and care and give it all to the society apart from love for nature, music and treks. We both bonded on a study proposal on Sustainable solutions for United Nations written by Dr. Daisaku Ikeda. That was the year 2013. We both have adopted this study in our real lives too. Though I have carried my approach from a commercial fashion designer to offering sustainable solutions via fashion hers has been of a more courageous one. From a hoity corporate job to full on Sustainable work. She has taken on Smokeless Cookstove Revolution(SCR), the calling of her life.

Whenever we meet she always leaves me inspired with the stories of this revolution. Those definitely were fair ideas left to my imagination of how her zeal and hard work has expanded in various towns. Although she has asked me to volunteer for her foundation earlier it was only when she took responsibility of nearby zillas (Shirpada, and Fardepada) around Mumbai, I jumped to work around my schedule to give my complete all with the SCR dream. After all I love the forests and yes I heal with the green.

We being city bred, it’s impossible to fathom the challenges of the rural world. I had a fair share of idea how the work done Smokeless Cookstove Foundation was conserving forests in a big way but little did I know the kind of magnanimity it is for the women of rural India. I still can’t believe the amount of time, usually around five hours-that involves in just collecting wood (which is usually found at Forests nearby) and getting back. It is the collected wood not less than 30kgs that is mounted on each of these women’s head and walked for about three hours on an average everyday towards home. I being an asthanga yoga student for years, the experience that each of their spine undergoes remains surreal to me. The ordeal doesn’t end there. Here each of us who have only seen cooking as an art and personally for me as a process to relax, they have unimaginable stories to share. The smoke that’s a part from cooking on chula leads to watering eyes, neck and spine problems, headaches, coughing and extreme health hazards. These are all 100% collective response of all women. In one case one women had fainted and lost all her fingers due to the Chula.

One special mention will be Anna, like his name he seems the village totally respects him and he too feels responsible towards the whole village. Although SCR is a project where every owner of the chula hand makes it for themselves, here we saw Anna influencing and spearheading the making of chulas for the entire village. I felt privileged to have met a person like Anna, a pure hearted soul, a rarity today. At various places there were LPG stoves that were present an initiative by the recent government. The process though seems to impossible affair owing to the extreme costs and difficult of availability to these rural places… The LPG remains a distant dream. As Suzy Kassem said ‘understanding other cultures build bridges’. It is the fastest way to bring the world together. SCR is truly that bridge before LPG becomes the reality for cooking at all homes of India. Smokeless Chula is a total solution not alone for the conservation of forests but also the health and  longevity of women of rural India. The technique to construct one is at a zero cost and amount of wood is reduced to 70% almost and yes its SMOKELESS !

I have truly experienced the happiness that the women who have adopted the smokeless chulah designed by Nitisha’s NGO, for cooking. Their gleams on faces speaks volumes of joy that they would have never thought was possible. The girls who have grown up to these women have known this is the way and nothing better. At the end of Fardepaada trip I too felt encouraged how solutions when directed can bring impactful happier world.

The film presents a project in Nyanza province, Kenya, where improved cook stoves have been introduced to subsistence farmers.

  • Picture Credits - SCF Team

About Deepa Parmeswarn

Deepa is a conscious fashion designer upscaling and donning clients of Leya with handwoven handspun stylish bespoke wear. She has showcased a sustainable range for a trade show in Italy. She has dressed up ladies at glam events like derby in conscious wear and have been caught by Getty. Prior to this she has styled various movies and commercial and has also dressed up the Hindujas, Danis of Asian Paints, Shahs of Sumer Builders etc @ Badasaab. She has handled export projects for various other companies as well. She will be soon launching her own conscious brand under the name Leya. You can see her work on her Instagram account @leyatale

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