Food for Thought: Prisoner seeks out culturally appropriate food

Prisoner Meena had a two-and-a-half-year-old son named Sai.

Sai lived with Meena part-time, under a program to reduce the impact of women’s imprisonment on young children.

Meena’s family is Hindu.

When Sai lived at home with his father, he ate traditional Hindu food considered important for his physical and spiritual development.

In prison, Meena tried to provide Sai with culturally appropriate food when he stayed with her.

She prepared traditional meals in the unit kitchen, until the prison’s supplier stopped stocking the necessary ingredients.

I am not fussed about what food I get, but this is for my son and I cannot let it go... he is not a prisoner

In response to our enquiries, the prison agreed to place a monthly order at a local supermarket and Meena agreed to pay for the ingredients and delivery.

In the end, Sai was able to enjoy traditional food and time with both his parents.