The COVID 19 pandemic has literally brought the world to a standstill. With lockdowns have come a huge realisation of each individual’s personal social responsibility to the people who are struggling to survive. Every individual is asking questions. What am I here for? What is my role/purpose?
It has always been our objective to be an accessible platform for people, specifically young people to express their feelings, exchange knowledge, and benefit the larger community in as many ways as they can. This global pandemic has enabled people to show empathy towards others more than ever.
Our 2ndday of relief activities was triggered by an SOS message from Mrs Saraswathi Pukarn, the Panchayat President of Gopadi, a small hamlet of a tribal community, to provide ration kits for the Koraga community. Most of them are daily wagers – basket weavers, who have now been deprived of their source of income. And we got requests from some members of the Kharvi Fishermen community, which has been hard hit by the pandemic, as they are unable to go out to sea in their fishing boats, or do any work to generate income. Both these communities do not have any savings, they survive on daily wages.
After making all the arrangements for the provisions and vehicles for transport, our ground team Venkatesh Moodgeri, Dinesh Saranga and Nagaraj, set off at 7:30 am on 8th May 2020 to Gopadi, with ration kits. Ganesh, the President of the Koraga community arranged for the distribution at the community hall at Roshnidhama, a common meeting point for the families from Gopadi and Kumbashi. Mrs Saraswathi Puthran and Ganesh Puthran, President of the Railway Hitarakshana Samithi, as well as Bharat Bangera of Clean Kundapura Project got actively involved in the distribution activities. Their help is most appreciated by our ground team.
We ensured that all social distancing norms and masking were observed as per the government’s rules. 23 needy families identified beforehand by the community leaders and Panchayat members, could come and collect their ration kits in a very orderly fashion. They expressed their gratitude to all the donors and our team. They were particularly pleased at our inclusion of chillis, coriander, jaggery and tamarind, as they use a lot of these condiments to season their food.
Next, our team went on to Kharvikeri, where Dinakar Kharvi, Secretary of Vidya Rangamitra Mandali, the local Youth organisation there, had identified 8 of the most deprived families of the Fishermen community, as our beneficiaries. The distribution took place outside his house, and when the beneficiaries opened the ration kits, they were overwhelmed by the contents.
They expressed their gratitude especially for the thought behind the carefully selected items in the bag and the quality of the products. They were particularly touched by our inclusion of packets of biscuits for the children. The children also expressed their joy in receiving the unexpected treat so thoughtfully provided by Dinesh, our Chief Coordinator at Kundapur. Our team returned to their homes feeling happy and fulfilled.
FSL India provides a channel for distribution activities. If you would like to hop on board through contributions or services, write to firstname.lastname@example.org. Right from raising funds, to distribution of the kits, there is a lot of planning and coordination that is required. There are a lot of team members working behind the scenes.
Also, there are many who work on the field whose names may not be included. We would like to recognise their involvement and once again, thank all our team members, supporters, volunteers, donors, family and friends, Government officials, and local leaders for their involvement, support, positive energy and good wishes. Watch this space for more stories of COVID 19 relief.