The state of hunger and poverty in India has always been a source of concern. When the virus found its way into India, it affected a lot of people. With nationwide panic and income being scarce. People who depended on their daily earnings, such as rickshaw drivers and street-side vendors were hit the worst. With next to no income, food insecurity in this section of the society grew alarmingly. Project Aashray is an initiative taken up by SKCF to reduce food insecurity among people and to eradicate the issue of hunger from as many lives as possible. SKCF has successfully conducted food and ration drives, while maintaining all the health and safety protocols under the government guidelines, to help those in need.
Covid-19 Ration Relief:
In the initial days of the lockdown, when the fear of the virus and uncertainty had put all businesses and work on an indefinite pause, people were under a lot of distress. Not only financially but people were under a lot of mental duress as well. In the absence of money, hunger had started to become a deadly problem. Along with the deadly virus, hunger had started claiming lives. Among the deaths reported during the lockdown, 34 were due to starvation and financial distress. We saw the need for immediate action, and with the help of our brave volunteers, we managed to arrange 70-100 ration kits. These kits contained basic requirements such as as- rice, flour, tea, vegetables, spices, oil and sugar. These packets were distributed with the aim that they would last a family for at least 15-20 days. Proper sanitation and cleanliness were maintained at all times. Our volunteers had called up our students and allotted them time slots in order to maintain physical distancing. After verifying the parents, the packets were handed over to the families.
The following precautions were taken to ensure the safe distribution of packages:
Wearing protective masks and gloves, our volunteers followed a very organized pattern for distributing the food packets. Say, volunteer A, would distribute the SKCF sanctioned slip. People having the slip were eligible to receive the packet. This was done in order to maintain discipline and order and to ensure that no hoarding took place. Volunteer B would then check the sanctioned slip, and hand over a food packet to the bearer. Another volunteer would be assigned to ensure that no littering takes place.
Help relief in West Bengal
Cyclone Amphan had hit the Bay of Bengal in May(16-21 May 2020), destroying thousands of homes. An ex-volunteer, Mr Subhayan Goswami, reached out to SKCF for help. We organized funds for a food donation drive for the cyclone victims. Mr Subhayan Goswami along with his group of friends conducted a successful food drive, distributing food packages to 100-150 distressed families; with protective masks, sanitisers and gloves provided for the volunteers by the organization. Once a volunteer, always a volunteer.
Rajma chawal distribution
As the unlock process began, people went back to work. To escape the raging food insecurity, the hours got longer but the food on the plate was still insufficient. Proper nutrition had taken a backseat during the lockdown. In an effort to improve nutrition and boost morale, SKCF conducted a rajma chawal distribution drive. More than 500 packets were served along with clean drinking water. Different sizes of packets, one for adult consumption and one for children’s consumption, were used to make sure that food was not wasted. Around 25 packets of the same were distributed among guardians waiting outside a nearby school for their family members appearing for the UPSC examination. The rest of the packets were taken to the slum area, where the students of SKCF reside, and along with the distribution, a small counselling session with the parents was held.
Even before the lockdown, SKCF has brightened festivals, birthdays and all excursions with the students, with delectable refreshments and meals. Food distribution has been a regular activity at SKCF, taking place twice or thrice a week, since 2016. Presently, SKCF is working with volunteers to take action based on data gathered by them, to reach the people who are in utmost need. We aim to reach unexplored places that are often neglected, along with the outskirts of Delhi. We work because we hope to build a world where people do not have to worry about three square meals a day ever again. Donate, and be a part of this change. Your decision could change someone’s life for the better.
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