For most children, farming is about large fields and cattle grazing But for some lucky ones, the farm has come right inside their school premises.
Two urban farmers, Julius Rego from Airoli and Harshal Deshmukh from Andheri, have started an initiative called Nurturing Nature, which mentors school students to create and nurture organic farms.
The duo has tied up with schools like Don Bosco High School, Matunga (east), Avabai Petit Girls High School, Bandra (west), St. Xavier’s High School, Airoli, and Sanjeevan Deep School for the mentally challenged, Airoli, to conduct sessions on organic farming.
“We wanted to show the children how easy it is to produce their own food. They are also contributing to the environment by recycling waste such as leaves and vegetable skins to produce manure,” said Deshmukh. The duo charges schools Rs500 for each session.
At Sanjeevan Deep School, students from St Xavier’s High School planted mustard, Italian basil, mint and fenugreek in the small farm. “We were taught how to make manure from discarded coconut shells and sugarcane bagasse. Using the same method I managed to grow chilly and lady finger in a pot on my window sill,” said Girish Narangwade, a Class 9 student of St Xavier’s School.