After their chapatis and chicken delicacies became a huge hit, prisoners of central jail will soon be foraying into a new arena to test their skills in making eco-friendly and stuffed toys.
The novel initiative is being launched at Poojapura Central Jail in Thiruvananthapuram. Toys available in the market are made of plastic and very expensive, which are beyond the reach of children of the lower income group, Poojapura central prison superintendent S Santosh said.
There is also a huge demand for affordable eco-friendly toys made of wood and cloth, Santosh said. A workshop was recently conducted with the Child Development Centre (CDC) of the Medical College in Thiruvananthapuram and the Poojapura central jail, to familiarise prisoners with the idea.
The aim is to utilise the services of women prisoners in making soft toys and male prisoners in the carpentry unit in the jail for wooden toys. The main market the jail department is foreseeing is the nearly 3,000 anganwadis, the rural mother and child care centres in the state, which need affordable and inexpensive toys.
"The government gives them grants to purchase toys and we can supply the toys to them," the official told PTI. The soft toys and eco-friendly toys can also be marketed through the jail outlets, he added.