DONATE
Sightsavers from the field

Indira Rasoi: a kitchen with a difference

Sightsavers visits a groundbreaking canteen in the Indian state of Rajasthan run by people with disabilities.

December 2021
A metal plate full of Indian food.

In Rajasthan in northern India, a brilliant initiative run by people with disabilities is providing fresh food for the community at low prices.

Sightsavers has played a significant role in helping to set up the Indira Rasoi initiative: government canteens run by women who are members of the local organisation of people with disabilities (OPD). Sightsavers has also worked to empower local people with disabilities and their institutions through training on gender, leadership, rights and entitlements, the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the Sustainable Development Goals.

Amaresh Pandey, state programme lead for Sightsavers in Rajasthan, says: “I was waiting for the doctor and was walking on the lane and suddenly I saw a huge poster for Indira Rasoi (‘rasoi’ means kitchen). The kitchen is one of three supported by the government of Rajasthan, managed by the OPD that was formed under Sightsavers’ social inclusion programme in Chittorgarh district.”

In the eight months since the three kitchens opened, they’ve served more than 150,000 people, with up to 300 people visiting each day. Customers can enjoy nutritious food for around Rs8 (approximately 8p, $0.1) per plate.

“The scheme launched with a pledge that ‘no one should sleep hungry’, and the kitchens provide fresh, nutritious food twice a day for a very low sum per meal,” says Amaresh. “The menu includes Indian bread, pulses, vegetables, pickles, yogurt and fresh, seasonal salad. The government of Rajasthan outsources the running of the kitchens to individuals, institutions and grassroots-level organisations.”

Amaresh created a short film about Indira Rasoi using footage captured on his mobile phone: watch it below to find out more about the groundbreaking initiative.

“The kitchens provide fresh, nutritious food twice a day for a very low sum per meal”

Read all our latest news stories

News from Sightsavers
A woman sits talking on a mobile phone.
sightsavers_news

Sightsavers wins Zero Project award for work on political participation

The prize was awarded for our inclusion project which promotes the rights of people with disabilities to participate in civic and political life in Cameroon and Senegal.

December 2022
Nanny Powers
sightsavers_news

Sightsavers launches campaign to ratify African disability rights treaty

The African Disability Protocol (ADP) addresses disability rights issues specific to people with disabilities living in African countries.

October 2022
Simon Bush.
sightsavers_news

Sightsavers director rewarded for his work on neglected tropical diseases

Sightsavers’ Simon Bush has received a lifetime achievement award for his work on river blindness, and has been named president of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

October 2022