Residents of Kottayam district have spared no expense towards ensuring that no one goes hungry. According to Manorama, a Kerala-based publication, nearly 8000 people are fed each day by a whole host of voluntary organisations.
Approximately 20 voluntary organisations serve a mid-day meal to patients receiving treatment in government hospitals. For example, the Navjeevan Trust, a local non-profit, serves nearly 5,000 patients of Medical College Hospital, Children’s Hospital, Kottayam General Hospital, Government Ayurveda Hospital and Government Homeopathy Hospital, reports Manorama.
There are other facilities for the hungry as well including mid-day meals offered by the local Red Cross, besides a hunger-free initiative started in the Pala town (20 km away from Kottayam).
There is also a food box in the Kurshupalli Kavala area, in which locals can deposit food for the homeless and hungry. Meanwhile, a set of locals have started a Facebook group, whereby they offer food to 15 beggars in Changanacherry town three days a week.
For the Adivasi community, meanwhile, Manorama has reported that ration shops in their colonies are delivering basic grains mandated by the government on a regular basis.
As for the 241 payment dwellers in Kottayam, there are a whole host of voluntary groups and government agencies offering food to them on a daily basis.
There is also the Anjappam Bhakshanashala, an eatery made famous for allowing customers to pay whatever they can in a box kept outside, which opened its branch in Changanassery town, Kottayam district. There is also the Social Active Friends (SAF), a local non-profit, conducted an initiative alongside the Kerala Hotel and Restaurant Association Unit on November 1, the birth anniversary of Kerala, serving free lunch across 22 hotels in Kottayam town.
Some segments of the local media have deemed the district hunger-free, although there is seemingly no official recognition of this fact. Nonetheless, what locals are trying to do ensure Kerala’s most populous district becomes free from the scourge of hunger.
(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)