She is just about high school pass from a remote village somewhere in Kumaon. She was married at a young age. She had her brood of kids at an early age too. But all this not deter her in her desire to do something worthwhile in her lifetime.
“kuch karna hai jindagi me” she said. She is Savitri Garjaula…the woman who inspired organic farming in not only her village but in seven neighboring villages.
Savitri returned to the village Mankanthpur, Kotabag from Ramnagar along with her kids while her husband took up odd jobs as a painter all over the town and various villages. She was determined to survive and succeed in village where she came as a bride.
There began her journey towards a fame which she had not dreamt of. She set out raising her kids single-handedly, looking after their needs of food and toiling in the fields….her husband though a financial contributor to family income was mostly away whole day, returning just to rest and recuperate.
She was no farmer…but she did not shy away from taking help from village farmers to learn about sowing, maintaining and reaping. She gathered information on best seasons to grow various vegetables, fruits, pulses, rice and how to safeguard those against pests.
Her thirst for knowledge and ambition to excel saw her taking up training in organic farming with the government agency. And as they say…there was no looking back thereafter.
Excelling at organic farming in her field, she soon started encouraging women of her village to take up organic farming. Slow and steady influenced by her more people joined in. She then started a self-help group of women of her village. Women gathered at her place to make pickles, jams and juices. These were bottled and sold to nearby areas and now reach New Delhi during food exhibitions.
Savitri now organizes training to more women and has extended her help to seven villages near her village. With some awards in her kitty, Savitri is selflessly promoting organic farming. She truly believes in empowering women for self-sustenance and self-improvement.
Savitri’s efforts have reached to the home of Alps, Switzerland. She exports about 400 quintal organically grown Basmati rice to Switzerland every year.
I got the opportunity to meet this super woman through Wild Iris Spa and Resort who organized an excursion to the ‘Organic Village’ as Mankanthpur is now known as. I had simple home-cooked meal of freshest, organic pulses and vegetables of Ragi chapati (bread made from flour of Finger Millet), Aloo Maithi (Fengreek and potato vegetable) and Soy Dal.
It is women like Savitri who prove that determination and perseverance is what success is made of. It has nothing to do with gender or poverty and opinions of others. Women who feel themselves trapped need to break away their chains…its all about will power and getting out of comfort zone.
Without western clothes to define her, without a formal training in English language and without any proclamations of equality she has reached heights that even many men have not attained.
Savitri and her likes are true example of super women to be celebrated on International Women’s Day.
Though the trip to Organic Village was organized by #TravelCorrespondentsandBloggersGroup in association with #WildIrisSpaandResort, the opinions are absolutely mine.
I truly was impressed with the simple woman who has not gone to college like many of us but has made her mark in the world whereas we still dream of finding a piece of sky for ourselves.