In what would lend a fresh lease of life to the surrogate mothers of Anand who rent out their wombs to childless couples across the world,the towns surrogacy pioneer Nayna Patel is all set to start a homemade chocolate-making unit at her upcoming hospital campus by June this year.
For four years,we have trained several surrogates in tailoring,embroidery-making,toy-making and in offering services as nannies and beauty salon professionals. This year,we are training them in chocolate-making through bakery classes. Twenty women will be trained in producing cookies and chocolates. We plan to offer the items locally as per orders and will simultaneously sell the products at the hospital, revealed Patel,founder of Aakansha Infertility Clinic at Anand that has completed over 500 surrogacy births successfully with the aid of over 500 surrogates associated with the clinic.
The plans are in line with Patel shifting to a bigger four-acre,130-bed multi-speciality hospital near Lambhvel Hanuman Temple on the outskirts of Anand. The hospital will be fully ready by March 2014. Once the new hospital comes up,Patel plans to add a huge kitchen where the chocolates and other snacks will be produced.
We are planning to launch a new brand under the aegis of Anand Surrogate Trust with an initial corpus of Rs 4 lakhs. Under this,around 20 women will get trained in chocolate-making initially. We plan to produce nutritive ingredient-based snacks that can be consumed by mothers-to-be and infants, said Patel.
Once the brand starts generating revenues,around 10 per cent of the same would be put back into the corpus of the Trust while the rest will be equally divided among the surrogate mothers, added Patel,who is in the process of applying for a trademark for the products.
Last July,Aakanshas founder Patel had announced the formation of a cooperative with 100 surrogates on the lines of Amul Cooperative model,but had to shelve the plans owing to an inspection by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) in December when the clinic was guided against such a move.
My vision is to start a company which can be gradually managed and run by the surrogates themselves through establishing small units in the new hospital. This will give the women an alternative source of employment once they quit being surrogates, she added.