Nadezhda Savova

Changing the world by baking bread

Nadezhda Savova - Bread Houses Network

Changing the world by baking bread

Nadezhda Savova - Bread Houses Network

When Nadezhda Savova-Grigorova inherited her great-grandmother’s crumbling house in Gabrovo, in her native Bulgaria, the budding anthropologist turned a burden into an opportunity. She organized a team of local volunteers and rebuilt the structure into a community-owned Bread House and Cultural Center where neighbors could come to bake loaves and form friendships. The project was such a success that the peripatetic Princeton Ph.D. student (she’s traveled to 76 countries) established similar programs in a dozen countries, from Israel to Brazil, Russia, South Korea, and the U.S.

“Making bread is extremely low-cost and merely takes time, creating the perfect opportunity to talk, listen, and learn,” Savova says. “By breaking bread with people of all walks of life, even feuding groups could come together.”

Nadezhda Savova

The Bread Houses Network creates and unites centers for community-building, creativity, and social entrepreneurship with the mission is to inspire individuals and communities around the world to discover and develop their creative potential and cooperate across all ages, professions, gender, special needs, and ethnic backgrounds through collective bread-making and accompanying art forms and sustainable ecological education.

The broad vision of the Bread Houses Network is to base social cohesion in simplicity: the collective bread-making methods and know-how we have tested and developed proved to be efficient and creative ways of building relations and improving people’s lives, because of the simple yet powerful message and experience of bread:

- hot bread is loved by all

- bread-making (work with dough) is enjoyed as an art as it resembles sculpture

- bread-making does not require special skills

- bread-making is not limited to gender, age, profession or ethnic heritage, thus uniting young and old, rich and poor, stranger and friend

Ivo Valkenburg

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