Her handicap couldn’t stop Geetha Saleesh from running her online business successfully. She is a blind woman who beats odds to earn Rs 50,000 a month selling ghee and superfood supplement.
Geetha Saleesh, was a 13-year-old girl from Thrissur, Kerala, when she wasdiagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa, a rare hereditary condition. The 39-year-old gradually lost her vision and was blind by the age of 15.
However, her disability never prevented her from attaining her ambitions. Geetha, who had always wanted to work, learned braille and completed her education. Geetha now runs a thriving online business selling homemade food products such as ghee and pickles, as well as a turmeric-based superfood supplement.
In 2020, she and her husband Saleesh Kumar founded ‘Geetha’s Home to Home.’ Geetha explains, “I always wanted to do something on my own, and being vision impaired never stopped me, as I have always had the support of my family.”
Geetha was no stranger to running a business; the pair ran a modest restaurant in Thrissur a few years ago.
Geetha explains, “We had a small organic restaurant, and that was our first business venture. We used to serve meals and drinks created using organic components, such as veggies. We had to close it down due to the loss of the rented space. But our restaurant’s large cooking experience provided me the courage to launch this online food business.”
She subsequently took a sabbatical to spend time with her children and family. However, when she wanted to return to work, she was dissatisfied with all of the rejections she had when looking for jobs.
Geetha was motivated to establish her own business by her husband Saleesh, a medical agent and distributor. Saleesh says, “Geetha always wanted to be self-sufficient businesswoman.Many questioned her talents, but I always had faith in her. I was convinced that she could easily thrive at it given her expertise and ability.”
The lock-down aided Geetha in coming up with the idea for her business. Like many other people, Geetha though about launching an online business during the lockdown.
She says, “In addition, with my prior cooking knowledge, I felt self-assured enough to establish a food business.”
Geetha explains that she had the support her husband and children, due to which she started selling a few things online.
Geetha, who launched her business early last year, mostly sold and promoted her products through social media. She soon introduced a few more goods, including a unique item called ‘Curcu meal.’
“It is currently the most sought-after product. After three years of research, we created a Curcu meal. It is a modified version of the traditional’manjal (turmeric) varakiyathu’, which is given to women after childbirth. It contains turmeric, dates, almonds, coconut milk, and jaggery.”
“We utilise Prathibha turmeric, which has the maximum curcumin level,” Geetha explains.
Turmeric’s bioactive ingredient, curcumin, carries all of its potential. The greater the substance, the higher the quality.” Curcu meal, which has thousands of followers across the country, costs Rs 600 every 500 gm bottle.
The Curcu meal, which is served in the shape of a paste-like Chyawanprash, can be enjoyed uncooked or by mixing it with hot milk, according to Geetha. It’s healthful and has no adverse effects because it’s made of turmeric.
Geetha is relieved that her research was useful. She says, “We’ve even had orders from Kashmir.” Geetha currently makes more than Rs 50,000 per month as a result of the popularity of her signature product and has developed a website to exhibit and market her items.
“Even though we have a website, we still promote our items through social media networks.”