Cooking classes for the blind, every week in Mumbai! Read this to know more
Cooking may seem rather intimidating for a person who is blind or visually impaired. But with proper training and care, it is not impossible.
Are you a blind or visually impaired person looking to learn basic cooking skills? Well, sign up for Shirin Kheriwala’s weekly classes!
Starting 25 August 2018, Shirin will hold classes every Saturday at the V M School for the Blind at Tardeo, Mumbai.
Timings are from 11.30 am to 1.30 pm and a batch of 10 people will be chosen. Seats are limited and admission is on a first come, first serve basis, so sign up fast!
Shirin, who is blind from birth, works as a helpdesk counsellor with the organisation, Eyeway. She is always looking for ways to empower blind and visually impaired people and hit upon cooking, which is a basic life skill.
I will be teaching how to make dishes for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Things like tea, poha, how to cook rice and dal. How to use a grinder and an oven. Chopping vegetables for salads, etc. For chopping, we will first hold their hands and teach them how far to keep the handle from their fingers. – Shirin Kheriwala, Counsellor/Teacher
The main aim, says Shirin, is to encourage people who are blind and visually impaired to feel confident and independent while carrying out daily tasks.
I see many blind girls and boys in society who have been raised in an over-protected way. Their parents tell them – ‘don’t go into the kitchen, don’t touch the knife, you will cut your hand, you will burn yourself’. The result is that these children are not able to do anything. They can’t even cook a meal. – Shirin Kheriwala, Counsellor/Teacher
What sets her classes apart from other similar initiatives is that as a blind person herself, Shirin has an insight into the challenges that visually impaired people face in the kitchen.
In Shirin’s case, her teacher was her mother, who encouraged her to be fearless in the kitchen.
I am the only blind person in my family and my mother was the one to encourage me to learn cooking. My hand got slightly burned the first few times but she told me not to worry about it. That this way I would never make the same mistake again. But most parents don’t do that. They put fear in the child and make him/her feel dependant. I want to give them confidence! – Shirin Kheriwala, Counsellor/Teacher
The course costs Rs 500 per person, and is refundable. Shirin says her aim is not to earn profit, but to instil confidence in blind and visually impaired people and to empower them with confidence.
As she puts it,
I want to see the fear going out of their faces!- Shirin Kheriwala, Counsellor/Teacher