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Hunger Initiatives

By | Blog, Healthy Food, Hunger, Initiative, ISKCON, Mid Day Meal, Poverty | No Comments

“If you want to eliminate hunger, everybody has to be involved.” – Bono

When we talk about hunger, everyone has had a taste of it. No matter rich or poor, a person needs to fulfill his/her hunger. Try once not to eat for a day or two, you might feel weak. Now, think about those who don’t get food for days and struggle everyday in their lives to afford at least one meal in one whole day. People who suffer everyday in their lives are not alone in this battle. There are many who have stepped up to lighten their burden and support them by their contribution in helping them to survive in the society.

Here are 5 inspiring stories of individuals who took the much needed leap of faith and started an initiative to help the otherwise neglected section of the society:

1. Roti Bank

Starting with the initiative step to donate books to underprivileged children, Rishikesh Narayan Singh, a postgraduate (sociology) from Patna University thought to take another step and start the campaign ‘Roti Bank’ to ensure that underprivileged people in the state capital, Patna, do not sleep hungry. Rishikesh runs a community school, Gyanshala, for underprivileged kids. The initiative is to collect fresh meal from the households and deliver it to those who cannot afford to buy food. Their target is to feed 100 people everyday. A team of volunteers associated with the Roti Bank puts on lots of effort to achieve their target. The members check freshness and quality of the food and deliver it to the target locations. ‘Roti Bank’ provides healthy and fresh meals to the people residing on footpath, outside the railway station, temples and hospitals.

2. FEED (Food, Education & Economic Development)

Founder of Food, Education & Economic Development (FEED), Chandra Sekhar Kundu, a Computer Science Teacher at Asansol Engineering College in West Bengal, took a step towards controlling of food wastage. He and his team of students visit eateries around the campus regularly to collect food and then distribute it among underprivileged children and elderly, four times a week. The eateries giveaway excess food, which they would have otherwise dumped. The food is mostly distributed to beggars and street dwellers. He thought to do this when he observed that a huge amount of food was being wasted in his college canteen while he was paying his bill for his meal. He then started taking interest and took a step along with some of his students.

3. Let’s Feed Bengaluru (LFB)

We try to avoid eye contact with underprivileged ones, ignoring at our best. However, one of us, Harshil Mittal, a software developer in Bengaluru, refused to do so. He came up with the most effective idea to push away hunger for such people in our society, cooking a little extra food in every home. Underprivileged children and elderly citizens are thankful to him and wait every third Sunday of the month to satisfy themselves with homemade food to eat. Harshil started his initiative in October 2015, with three of his friends, Rishiom, Selina, Ashutosh. Initially, he went door to door in his housing society, told residents about the concept and asked them whether they would be interested in participating. Today, the group goes by the name “Let’s Feed Bengaluru” (LFB) and boasts of an extensive network of donors and 750 registered volunteers.

4. Youngistaan

Youngistaan Foundation was initiated by Arun Daniel Yellamaty in 2012 in Hyderabad which focuses on feeding the homeless on weekends. It has turned into a big foundation which now has almost 300 volunteers. Arun Daniel with his team started with visiting 6 orphanages and gave tuition to the children from class 1st to 12th. He gradually expanded his work and started feeding the underprivileged people on Saturdays and Sundays. He not just feeded the homeless but also provided them clothes, medical help, etc. The kind of transformation they have brought among the homeless people is beyond its imagination. From giving showers to haircuts to shave, people have observed total makeover among them. Their work has been an inspiration to all.

5. Make The World Wonderful

Meghana Dabbara, 19-year-old girl from Hyderabad, crafted a model. Through her model, she wanted to provide a residential schooling shelter for the underprivileged providing education about gender equality, secularism, and equality across caste, class, creed and colour. When she was 17, she thought to have her own organisation and began with her own ‘start up’, searched for a suitable team for her. She then connected with Khyathi from Hyderabad, Saumya Katuri from California, and Pranita Garimella from New York. As of now, she is continuing as per her model and taking up the responsibilities for underprivileged children which includes, food, accommodation, education and everything else.

The major cause is poverty due to which many of the underprivileged children face harsh conditions and end up being trapped for life. So, stop thinking whether to take a step or not, instead take a small step from your home itself. With each small step you take, you might make a big difference to someone else’s life.

Education and Poverty

By | Blog, Healthy Food, Hunger, ISKCON, Mid Day Meal | No Comments

Nelson Mandela once said, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world” and in a developing country like India, we have a lot that needs to be changed with a proper course of action. One of them being poverty.

Poverty is the state of not being able to fulfill the basic necessities like shelter, adequate food, clothing, medicines, etc. The reason behind poverty and hunger in India is the lack of education. The rapidly rising population causes lack of job opportunities, which again results in poverty.

In India, poverty can be eradicated when everyone in this country comes together and makes a joint effort. We can’t just rely on Government to make new programmes every year, even we need to take a step forward and do something about this horrific situation. These programmes would be effective only when we start making an effort and understand the need of the hour.

Education is the most effective tool to tackle the large-scale poverty entrenched in all parts of India. It is the only way out to a better India where there is no poverty, hunger and illiteracy. Providing education to poor people will help them to be qualified to get a job. These jobs will help them to improve their financial condition.. Hence reducing hunger and poverty.

We, at IFRF have taken a step towards a better India by providing midday meal to students in the government schools. This helps them in two ways: One, they get a healthy meal which provides them with all the essential nutrients for a healthy body and mind. And second, they are being educated which will ensure them a better future and bring India out from the claws of illiteracy and poverty.

IFRF, Haryana believes in improving the life standard of children and promote education keeping children’s health in mind. If children are educated, they can contribute their significant bit to the process of nation-building and that day won’t be far when India will finally escape and be free from the chains poverty.

Hunger and US!

By | Blog, Hunger, ISKCON, Mid Day Meal, News | No Comments

India, a developing nation with a population of 1.3 billion faces some serious problems, out of which one of the major problem is Hunger. Despite the fact that India’s growth in Industrial and Economic Sectors is phenomenal still it is unable to provide access to food to a large number of people, especially women and children. In 2017, India was ranked at 100th position in Global Hunger Index out of 119 countries which is three positions below than its rank in 2016.

India is home to the largest undernourished population in the world. Although everyone is aware of the fact but the figures below clearly show the real situation of the country in terms of hunger,

  • 14.5% of our population is undernourished
  • 190.7million people go hungry everyday
  • 21.0% of children under 5 are underweight
  • 38.4% of children under 5 years of age are stunted
  • 3,000 children in India die every day from poor diet related illness

Common childhood illnesses such as diarrhea, pneumonia, and malaria affect malnourished children quickly and they have a higher risk of death from these diseases. Government has taken many initiatives for the upliftment of children as well as women in India. They have implemented schemes like Mid Day Meal Scheme, Annapurna Scheme for senior citizens,etc. For the betterment of the society, children specifically ISKCON Food Relief Foundation (IFRF) has also taken a step forward towards this initiative.

ISKCON Food Relief Foundation organises Mid-Day Meal Programmes in various government schools and provide nutritious food to school going children. This initiative is taken by IFRF in order to curb hunger and starvation in India so that no child dies of hunger or malnourishment. The aim of this project is to rescue children from the dangerous cycle of malnourishment and illiteracy, so as to provide children with proper nutrition along with quality education.

Though the initiative is a small step taken towards the immense problem of Hunger and Illiteracy in India, but we wholeheartedly hope to bring a positive change and aim to make India – A Hunger Free Nation.