Hey guys! Anjali here. Today was a pretty exciting day, seeing as it was our first serious visit to to Dolatpura. We talked to Sumitraben and Chatrasen bhai about stoves and toilets gathering the feedback required to start building and continue co-designing our technology. It was pretty exciting for me personally because it was the first time I had ever been to Dolatpura. Being able to speak Gujarati allowed me to connect well with some of the women in the village and everyone was so excited to see us especially the kids.
We worked out some scheduling for the next week with Sumitraben as we clarified some information about how often and when she used the dual surface cook stove that the Spring break team built in February. Equipped with her responses, we briefly examined it for flaws that we can work to improve while we continue to prototype. We also talked about possible design changes and materials that might be more durable, such as concrete.
With Chatrasen bhai, we had the opportunity to look at the land behind his house along with the incomplete outhouse that was already there, to evaluate how we might go about constructing our prototype. He seemed excited to get the project going, and solidified some details about his expectations.
But of course it wasn’t all work. We hung out in the village after we were done with our questions to play cricket and football (soccer) with the kids. It was good to continue forging relationships with the community. Ulpa, Sumitra ben’s daughter, even did some awesome mehndi (henna) on Sarah and Natasha. Although we didn’t spend too long in the village, it was definitely a lot of fun getting to know the village and villagers better.