Food for Thought: Mohila Ogrojatra

By 2nd February 2022 February 10th, 2022 Community Stories, News

Corra believes that diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) is fundamental to its ten-year strategy, which centres on three themes: voice, power and change.  At the heart of the strategy is the belief that when people are heard, power shifts towards them and they can help create the change that matters to them.  

It has been an honour and privilege to work alongside a group of women who aptly chose the name of their group as ‘Mohila Ograjatra’ which translates to ‘women moving forward’ in Bengali.

A huge thank you to a member of Mohila Ogrojatra, an Edinburgh based Bengali Women’s Group, for sharing her experience, in her own words, of being part of this group.

Food for thought
During the pandemic I was home alone with children, and I was bored and depressed.  When I joined Mohila Ogrojatra, I feel very good and relieved, as through the group I meet lots of women and made new friends. I waited all week to meet the group online, that’s how much I looked forward to it. I learned new things and experiences. I also went on an Edinburgh Bus Tour trip, to different places where I have never been before, even though I live in Edinburgh.

I love cooking and making food for family and friends, and my dream is to set up my own cooking business.  I knew that I had to do a Food Hygiene Course, but didn’t know how to go about this.  I was very happy that through Mohilia Ogrojatra, we were able to book the REHIS Food Hygiene Course and it was with a Bangla speaking trainer.

Since I left Bangladesh and moved to Edinburgh, I haven’t studied.  This was my first time doing a course and I did it with the other Bangladeshi women. Twelve ladies attended the course, and it was a fantastic experience with all the ladies.  It was also the first time we all met face to face. I felt like I was free bird for the day. It was our day to learn without any disturbances. We all had a good break and enjoyed each other’s company.

A group of women wearing colourful head scarf hijabs posing for a photo

I did the exam and I passed and that means I am one step going closer to my dream.  All the ladies passed the exam, and we were all so happy!   

A picture of women receiving their Food Hygiene course certificate at the celebration lunch with Emily and Mizan.

We had an awards ceremony for all the ladies passing the REHIS Food Hygiene Course and we received our certificates and flowers. We all celebrated having lunch together and had a great time.  

Although I haven’t set up my business yet,  I will be soon.  I have done some food delivery for friends and family. 

Another highlight for me is that I am also doing weekly English classes through Mohila Ogrojatra and this is giving me the confidence to speak over the phone and with my children’s school and other necessary places. 

I was in the dark and Mohila Ogrojatra showed me the light in my life. I think now I have the strength, confidence, and skills to manage my everyday life. 

You can also read Saleha’s story here.  Saleha is also a member of Mohila Ogrojatra.

Mohila Ogrojatra is a community led grantmaking project funded through The Equity Programme.

We, at Corra learned so much from Ishrat (Co-ordinator) and the women of Mohila Ogrojatra, from what mattered to them, to the activities they chose collectively that would benefit them as a group of Minority Ethnic women. It certainly got us thinking and reflecting on what we can and should do more as an anti-racist funder.

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