Commoners step into help the needy during Covid lockdown

While NGOs and volunteer groups are going all out to help those in need, several middle-class families also are doing their bit

By   |  Namrata Srivastava  |  Published: 10th Jun 2021  12:26 am
These families are preparing meals for 100-200 people every day and distributing them to the needy near hospitals and other places.

Hyderabad: The second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic has brought the society to a literal halt. While NGOs and volunteer groups are going all out to help those in need, several middle-class families have now joined the battle. Doing their part to help the hapless, several families are making meals for 100-200 people every day and distributing them near hospitals or wherever they see poor people in need of food.

Medha Gummi and her family have been making 100 meals for people near Vanasthalipuram. “We thought that we can also do something in these distressing times. We made one pot meal of pullihora and distributed it to people. It was very satisfying to give something in these trying times. Many of them even blessed us for the food,” she recalls how they began.

Others like Hruday Charan Appani and his mother Neelima Pandiri have been distributing homemade food since last year. “The first time we did this last year, my mom cooked for 12 people. That slowly increased and by the end of the first wave, we were making and distributing about 300 meals a day. This year too, after the second wave tightened its grip, we started the service. However, since my mother couldn’t cook, I rented a closed kitchen and hired a cook who helps us. We have distributed 1,300 meals in the last 15 days,” he says, adding that the meal, which comprises vegetarian biryani/pullihora/fried rice, is cooked and packed and distributed along with buttermilk.

Interestingly, Hruday shares that it is not only the rich who can extend a helping hand. “My salary is Rs 15,000 and till date, all the meals we have made and groceries we have distributed has been funded by me. It’s not a very expensive idea to make food for 100-150 people per day. In fact, it costs less than two cheese burst pizzas that we order so often,” he points out.

On one hand, where these services are motivating people to help more people, the process of making food is also bringing families together. Shares Dhruthi Pochampally, “When we cook, my parents make the food, while I and my brother dice the fruits. Since the pandemic started we have seen many deaths, of our close family and friends, and that has been quite depressing. So to help people gives us immense satisfaction. We have been distributing food near Kukatpally area,” she shares.

Commoners Relief Riders

While many are ready to make the meals for the needy, most people do not know where to distribute the same. That’s where Relief Riders step in. This group of 160 riders across the city is trying their best so that the homemade food reaches the needy person.

Ravi Sambari, one of the founders of the group, shares, “We have been working towards delivering food and groceries to the needy people. Anyone can contact us, from any location, for the delivery of meal.” One can contact the team at +919701744814.


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