When Tamil Nadu’s former Chief Minster K. Kamaraj saw a boy near the town of Cheranmahadevi herding livestock he asked him,
“What are you doing with these cows? Why didn’t you go to school?”
The child immediately retorted, “If I go to school, will you give me food to eat? I can learn only if I eat.”
Unknowingly, this young boy had touched on a critical problem facing the nation’s children: they cannot learn on a hungry stomach. His simple response sparked a series of events which gave rise to the Mid-day Meal Scheme as it is known today. Started in the 1960s in Tamil Nadu, the program was set up to reduce hunger and encourage universal primary education.
And hence was started the Mid-day Meal Scheme for school children.
Looking out of a window one day in Mayapur, a village near Calcutta, His Divine Grace A.C Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada saw a group of children fighting with street dogs over scraps of food. From this simple, yet heart breaking incident, came the determination that: No one within a ten mile radius of our center should go hungry.
And hence came The Akshaya Patra Foundation.
Mr.Narayanan Krishnan saw an old man suffering from acute hunger and eating his own human waste. As the old man ate the food given to him, he held Krishnan’s hand, giving the very real sensation of a powerful energy. This triggered an experience of inner happiness and fulfillment Krishnan had never felt before.
And therefore began The Akshaya Trust.
There are many many noble people who have got touched by poverty and have found an organization for this noble cause.
There are many many such organizations which are in need of support – donations and volunteers.
There are many many blogs, advertisements and articles in magazines and newspapers bringing into notice about these organizations.
And there are many many readers like you and me who take time to read, feel pity for the poor, feel respectful for the founder and safely click on the red cross button on the top right corner of the page. Yes, though there are many many common people with a lot of compassion in their hearts, many many lack the will and motivation to act 😦
Here is an opportunity for the readers to act NOW.
If you personally know of an organization of this kind, do take an effort to serve them. If you have the heart and will but do not know where to find one, here are a few for you:
1. Infinite Dimension Charitable Trust: I have been personally involved with this one. One day in a month, food for 100 people is prepared, packed and distributed to needy people on the roadsides. We volunteers take part actively in cutting the vegetables, cooking, packing, take our own vehicles and go around the city, stop wherever a needy children or adult is spotted and hand over the packet directly to their hands. Contact Address : A101, 3rd Avenue, Anna Nagar, Chennai-600040, Tamil Nadu. Phone :044 – 65444252.
- Rs. 525 ($11.50 approx.) to feed a child for a full school year. Click here for instant online donation. (OR)
- Click here to promote The Akshaya Patra Foundation (TAPF) in your social networking profile and ask your friends to follow us. Introduce TAPF to all your online communities/ fan clubs etc. (OR)
- Click here to volunteer in their events.
4. Photo Courtesy: CRY: Buy greeting cards and other articles to help a poor child.
5. If time and situation doesn’t favor you to do any of these though you would want to do, drop a line with your e-mail ID in the comment section. Something shall be done.
In general, donations doesn’t interest many of us because we are not sure if it reaches the right hands. However remember that there are always opportunities for volunteering in most organizations. And preparing food and distributing to the needy around the city (like the one mentioned in the first point) can be done by anybody anywhere. It doesn’t require an organization. A group of self-motivated people need to meet at the right place. That’s it! And if any of you are associated with a charitable organization and want to promote, please leave a mention in the comments section, shall be added to the post.
Serving hands are better than the praying lips!