NDTV-Dettol Banega Swasth Swachh India NDTV-Dettol Banega Swasth Swachh India

Leaving No One Behind

Serving Up Inclusivity: The Trans Café, Where Dreams Flourish

Discover the inspiring tale of The Trans Café in Mumbai, where inclusivity takes center stage and the dreams of the transgender community are celebrated

Serving Up Inclusivity: The Trans Café, Where Dreams Flourish

New Delhi: Growing up, Malini had dreams of pursuing a career in hotel management and making a mark in her chosen field.

“But my gender identity came proved to be the biggest obstacle. The society imposes sex work and begging on us,” says Malini Pujari, Head Chef, The Trans Café.

Frustrated with this reality, Malini took the brave decision to leave home and create a life for herself on her own terms.

I was refused every job I applied for. For a good two years, I was homeless and struggled to find stability and acceptance, says Malini.

Also Read: “I Came Out To My Mother And Realised Parent’s Love Is Unconditional,” Says 18-year-old Non-Binary Person

Then The Trans Café happened, like a blessing. This unique establishment, owned and operated by the transgender community, provided Malini with an opportunity to showcase their culinary skills as a lead chef. Today, her recipes, particularly Veg and Non-veg Thalis, are the most popular.

Serving Up Inclusivity: The Trans Café, Where Dreams Flourish

Located in Andheri, Versova, The Trans Café has been conceptualised by Zainab Patel, a transgender rights activist back in 2023

Conceptualised by Zainab Patel, a transgender rights activist, the cafe has become a symbol of inclusivity and acceptance.

Dil se shukriya to Zainab ma’am! Her motive was simple. Society will not think about the community, someone from the community itself will have to help uplift fellow members, says Malini.

Serving Up Inclusivity: The Trans Café, Where Dreams Flourish

Meet Malini Pujari, Head Chef of The Trans Café

Customers of The Trans Café find solace and a sense of belonging in this welcoming space. The food evokes a sense of nostalgia and comfort, reminding them of home-cooked meals.

Also Read: What To Do And Not Do When Your Child Comes Out To You. Tips From A Parent Of A Queer Child

“When I came to know about this unique restaurant, I could not help but visit it,” said one of the regular customers, who has dined at the restaurant ever since it was opened in October last year.

Another customer said,

This place is like home away from home for people like me. It is like my mother is cooking for me.

The success of The Trans Café transcends Malini’s personal journey. It has evolved into a platform for numerous young adults from the transgender community to challenge societal norms and pursue their dreams.

The Trans Café is a testament to the power of community support and breaking taboos. It serves as a beacon of hope for individuals like Malini, who refuse to let their gender identity limit their aspirations, says Zainab.

Serving Up Inclusivity: The Trans Café, Where Dreams Flourish

The walls of the Trans Café are filled with stories of community support and taboo-breaking.

It is currently present at one location with eight employees. The dream is for it to be expanded to every nook and corner, with thousands of employees from the community, Zainab concludes.

Also Read: Meet Rudrani Chhetri, A Trans Woman Empowering Her Community

NDTV – Dettol have been working towards a clean and healthy India since 2014 via the Banega Swachh India initiative, which in its Season 10 is helmed by Campaign Ambassador Ayushmann Khurrana. The campaign aims to highlight the inter-dependency of humans and the environment, and of humans on one another with the focus on One Health, One Planet, One Future – Leaving No One Behind. It stresses on the need to take care of, and consider, everyone’s health in India – especially vulnerable communities – the LGBTQ populationindigenous people, India’s different tribes, ethnic and linguistic minorities, people with disabilities, migrants, geographically remote populations, gender and sexual minorities. In a world post COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (WaterSanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign will continue to raise awareness on the same along with focussing on the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children, fight malnutrition, mental well-being, self-care, science and health, adolescent health & gender awareness. Along with the health of people, the campaign has realised the need to also take care of the health of the eco-system. Our environment is fragile due to human activity, which is not only over-exploiting available resources, but also generating immense pollution as a result of using and extracting those resources. The imbalance has also led to immense biodiversity loss that has caused one of the biggest threats to human survival – climate change. It has now been described as a “code red for humanity.” The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollutionwaste managementplastic banmanual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene. Banega Swasth India will also be taking forward the dream of Swasth Bharat, the campaign feels that only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and the country can become a Swasth or healthy India.

This website follows the DNPA Code of Ethics

© Copyright NDTV Convergence Limited 2024. All rights reserved.