These volunteers ensure that nobody goes hungry

The needy can pick food packets and water bottles

Those who pass by Vasantha Nagar here can notice a small table with a few food packets and water bottles. On top of it is a banner which reads ‘Pasikkiradha? Eduthu Kollungal’ (Hungry? Take it).

Padikkatuggal, a non-governmental organisation comprising students and staff of various colleges, has been distributing free food packets and water bottles to the public since Monday. S. Malaisamy, one of its coordinators, said a volunteer would be present near the table to guide those who come to pick up the food packets.

“Some people feel ashamed to seek alms or food from others. So, by placing the food on the table, people can take as many packets and bottles as they need without any embarrassment. Also, it helps in preventing human contact, thereby preventing COVID-19 infection of our volunteers,” he said.

Since Monday, the team has been preparing 150 to 200 food packets, mostly containing tomato rice, curd rice and other varieties of rice. “The homeless, relatives of COVID-19 positive patients who are admitted to hospitals, and others who are in need of food are benefited by these food packets,” said Mr. Malaisamy.

The NGO, which was formed in 2012, has helped underprivileged sections of the society during the first wave of the pandemic. “We update our needs on social media platforms and donors support us by giving commodities,” said Mr. Malaisamy.

The group also plans to increase the number of places in Madurai where the free food packets can be accessed by the public.

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