The group of eight people in North Delhi’s Mukherjee Nagar started their community kitchen to feed over a hundred people every day
State governments across the country have set up special community kitchens to feed the homeless in the wake of the nationwide lockdown imposed to check the spread of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19). At the same time, some citizens have taken it on themselves to feed the hungry mouths.
One such group is that of eight working professionals from Delhi University’s north campus in Mukherjee Nagar, who have been feeding 150-175 poor people in the area every day for the last 40 days.
The process is streamlined: Each one of them spends three to four hours daily preparing and packing meals while also managing their work from home. Delhi Police, too, has come forward to support them — an officer from Mukherjee Nagar police station picks up the meal packets and distributes them to street dwellers.
They called the intiative ‘Kitchen to Community’.
“One friend from our group thought of taking this up. She called up the nearby police station and their communication officer arranged a pick-up for us. We have been cooking 150-170 meals every day,” said Paloma Dutta, a member of the group.
The group is also supporting many families in the area with weekly dry ration supply. They identified around 20 families to whom they hand over the dry ration parcels. If they are unable to do so, the Delhi Police helps them distribute it.
“We started small, with sandwiches. Then we started making burgers, vada pav and then eventually vegetables and rice,” said Aswathy, a researcher and member of the group.
The initiative, popularly called community kitchen, has garnered traction in the backdrop of COVID-19 lockdown. One can cook inside their home and hand it over to police officers for distribution. They need not come out of the house for the same.
The Mukherjee Nagar group drafted the food menu that took care of both taste and nutrition.
“We ensure the meal has adequate protein and carbohydrate content. We give bananas also,” said Paloma.
While they spent their own money in the beginning, their friends pitched in later.
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