We used to collect wood, chop and store it, but in the rainy season with the wood getting damp, we struggled to light it and it also gave out more smoke,” says Sabita, a resident of Katangdhara village near Nagpur.
This situation was even harder for the woman to bear as she was used to gas stoves in her parents’ home before marriage. But now, thanks to intervention from RC Nagpur Greencity, D 3030, which has adopted this place under the ‘Happy Villages’ programme, the living conditions of the villagers have change dramatically. The club has gifted them smoke-free kitchens through gas stoves. Devendra Agrawal, who owns a gas agency in the nearby town Hingna, provided the gas connections as a CSR initiative. The villagers readily agreed to pay for their cylinders as it was a dream come true for them.
Around 150 tribal families inhabit this village and till 2009, it had little cause for cheer. The Rotarians constructed a primary school in 2010, and have been giving books, uniforms, bags and stationery to the children every year. Encouraged by this, the Zilla Parishad added two more classes, converting it into a high school. The club donated bicycles to 25 girls to help them commute to school and back. Toilets were built for all houses and RCCs appointed to sensitise the villagers on literacy, sanitation and hygiene.
To help women with economic independence, the Rotarians donated sewing machines and organised tailoring classes. Next on cards is building a check-dam, installing solar energy panels for street lights and providing 100 LPG connections in the nearby villages.
Meanwhile, Sabita now has more time to complete her graduation course through correspondence.