Jun 11, 2020

Good news, bad news

These rations will feed their families for a month
These rations will feed their families for a month

Well, we all know the bad news:  the lockdowns to stem the spread of COVID-19 have had a devastating effect on marginalized people worldwide.  We have not been able to continue work on most of our projects, and the women we had hoped to help now find themselves in desperate straits, since they can no longer sell their produce roadside or at temples. 

But the good news is:  we can provide them with emergency rations to tide them over till they can back on their feet.  We received generous grants from both GlobalGiving and Boise Tamil Sangram, and Friends of the Third World has agreed to act as our fiscal sponsor to transfer both these funds, and your donations, to our bank in India.

So we have been very busy, providing midday meals to those with no other food source and offering longer-term rations for those with the ability to cook.  We are happy to have been able to tide women farmers over until they can begin recovery and are looking forward to being part of that effort as restrictions ease.

Although I realize that some of you have yourselves been coping with a drastic loss of income, if you are able to make an additional donation to help make sure that we can continue to help women feed their families during this time, you can donate to provide food, funds & support for India's COVID-19 victims.  But even if all you can do is share this project with friends and family, we remain deeply grateful for your past support.

Wishing you strength and safety during this difficult time --

Janet Preethi

   

our volunteers helped assemble relief packets
our volunteers helped assemble relief packets
We were careful to ensure safety
We were careful to ensure safety
We distributed bags of rice and dahl
We distributed bags of rice and dahl
May 29, 2020

Thanks to the heroic efforts of our staff & volunteers

Beneficiaries collect rations
Beneficiaries collect rations

As the lockdown enters its third month, and the number of infections continue to rise, we have been relentless in our efforts to make sure that no one is left hungry and that rations reach far and wide. 

Boise Tamil Sangam and VOICE Trust decided to work together on plans to assist 300 marginal and tribal families in 15 villages of Manachanallur Block of Trichy. BOISE Tamil Sangam is an alliance of Tamilians who have settled in the USA. We were blessed to receive a generous grant from them and we immediately mobilized our volunteers to organize the distribution.

Our field volunteers put together a package containing 5 kilos of rice, 1 kilo wheat, 1 kilo red gram, 100 grams each of condiments, 1 litre oil, soap, sanitary napkin, salt, 1 kilo sugar, and 100 grams of tea powder, which they distributed to each family of what ended up being 352 families.  

Earlier this month, we distributed biscuits donated by a local bakery to many homeless individuals and hot lunches to manual workers, day wage earners, and street vendors, all of whom otherwise would have little to eat that day.  We have plans to keep repeating the distribution cycle to all the beneficiaries as often as we are able.

All through the distribution activity, police protection was arranged to avoid overcrowding and ensure the safety of beneficiaries as well as our volunteers. Social distancing was strictly followed by issuing tokens to beneficiaries. Only 10 people were called at a time to queue up for rations. The volunteers donned masks and gloves and used disinfectants to protect themselves and everyone around them. 

I think you can proud of the work you helped fund, and of our selfless volunteers.

As always, thanks for your past support and for any future help you can offer.

Stay well -- stay safe -- stay home!

Janet Preethi

Rations assembled for distribution
Rations assembled for distribution
No one is left without food
No one is left without food
A safe social distance keeps everyone safe
A safe social distance keeps everyone safe
This may be their only meal all day
This may be their only meal all day

Links:

May 7, 2020

Our activities during the COVID-19 lockdown

As with most things today, our project to enlist schoolchildren in the fight against global warming has been put on hold until the current emergency has passed.  But we remain committed to helping children learn how to plant and nurture as a way to cool both their immediate environment and the planet, and look forward to resuming our efforts as soon as we can.

Meanwhile, we are scrambling to provide emergency food and supplies to the thousands of families who no longer have the income that jobs as daily wage workers, street vendors and migrant workers used to provide.   We have been offering a mid-day meal to groups in need that some of the children told us was all they would have to eat that day.

We are grateful for your past support and are hoping trees that the trees you helped the children plant will have managed to survive without regular nurturing during the crisis.  Although I realize that some of you have yourselves been coping with a drastic loss of income, if you are able to make an additional donation to help make sure that the schoolchildren are adequately fed during this time, you can donate to provide food, funds & support for India's COVID-19 victims .

Wishing you strength and safety during this difficult time --

Janet Preethi

Links:

 
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