E M Foundation Delhi, the NGO established by EMF to make products from social technologies for the economically lower strata of the society, living primarily in village environment, has now begun its operation in a village in Delhi.
First project has been to make sanitary napkins for the women at a low cost but with high quality absorption and with bio-degradable materials. The process is mainly manual which ensures some employment for the village women and electricity requirement is minimal for sealing and UV treatment for hygiene, before packing.
The NGO works in partnership with the Indian Government department of Science and Technology whose Common Services Centres division quality control the products before it goes to the market. Sanitary napkins have an absorption capacity of 90ml to 100ml, compared to those commonly available in the market with absorption capacity of 50ml to 60ml. Further we use wood pulp sheets – no plastic – and along with gel sheets all materials used are 100% biodegradable.
Anil Bhanot, EMF’s Chairman secured the premises and a partnership with the Indian Government last autumn and this month he has employed staff to start making the product. He hopes every quarter to go and add a social technology product to manufacture at a small scale for the village needs. The NGO’s aim is not to mass produce these products for commercial reasons, which automatic machines can well do, but to create some employment for the village and to ensure the village’s health and education needs are met at an inexpensive cost. So this year with the Indian Government’s help, he hopes to add LED Bulb making facility for the village needs, set up computers to teach the village youth computer skills possibly with a vocational diploma, create a Tele-Medicine facility for the elderly to diagnose their illnesses through skype meetings with doctors practising remotely.
For opening ceremony we cracked open a coconut in the Indian tradition of signifying, that within a rough world like the outside of a coconut to work together smoothly like the inside of a coconut and be sweet like its water.
[E M Foundation is a social enterprise Charity for social justice]