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It had been a while since we followed up with our stakeholders and plants. So one of the afternoons I went wandering in the streets of Khirkee to say hello to our farmer friends. I had brought with me a Lemon grass sapling, from the NDMC school’s urban farm (behind my house), for Ahmed family’s kitchen garden.

I noticed a sweeper in Gandhi Park and this was a rare sight. I went to chat with the local uncles and found that these were MCD cleaners who had come after many requests and complaints. Roshan Lal, another resident of the Gandhi Park was on inspection, as it seemed, and approached me and my camera. Maybe he had seen me at the park before or it was my ‘kurta and jhola’ look that made him ask me to help reach out to the concerned authorities for issues with the park around pruning of branches, regular watering etc. I agreed to help him out and discussed our project proposal with him. Roshan Lal loved the ideas volunteered to grow some food in his balcony. I am happy to say we’ve found ourselves a new stakeholder.

JD Khan stood on the railings with a hose pipe from his house spraying water on his Jamun trees. He has been tendering them for 2 years now! I walked further to Ahmed family’s residence and Ahmed Ji introduced me to his friend. This time I went with a motive to convince them to start composting their kitchen waste and it was fascinating to learn how peer pressure was playing an important role in that. Ahmed Ji was at first not quite excited about dealing with waste but his collage and friend pushed him to not only try it but also buy keep in mind the aesthetics and hence get a proper terracotta pot. I could see Ahmed Ji’s ‘I am not sure’ turning into a ‘we could certainly try that’. I went upstairs to document the growth of his plants and headed back to KHOJ with a smile.

At KHOJ things were looking happy too. Arun’s family has been sowing and harvesting for over 2 months now. They have now started sourcing seeds from their village and growing them at KHOJ. We couldn’t have possibly expected a better result than the family adopting the garden and then building on it as well.

Finally, on my way to the metro station, I stopped over at the Jamun Park and Shweta Bhattad‘s team with help from Adil were doing a tremendous job at spot fixing Jamun Park. You can read more about their project here.