Young World

Food for thought?

A need to give: Feeding the hungry.

A need to give: Feeding the hungry.  

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For Sneha Mohandoss, social media means more than chatting. For, it opened up a whole new world!

A group walks down the streets of Chennai with packets in their hands. They seem to be looking for someone. Soon, they begin to talk to people in the lanes. The people they talk to are homeless and hungry. The group distributes the packets and the hungry eat, satisfied.

A dark-haired, tall woman from the group, Sneha Mohandoss, who has been handing out the packets of food, smiles happily as she looks on. And she has every reason to. A woman on a mission, at 23, she is determined to eradicate hunger in India and she has begun her project, a food drive called ‘Food Bank’, in her hometown, Chennai.

The concept behind Food Bank is simple — when you cook for your family, cook extra for the poor and the homeless. Pack the food and inform Sneha through WhatsApp or Facebook. Volunteers collect the packets from you and distribute them.

Cook at home

The idea came to Sneha when she was on Facebook, early, this June. “I am extremely active on social media, especially Facebook. One day, I realised that I could use social media to do something that could help people in need, as opposed to merely whiling away my time. I grew up watching my grandparents give fresh, home-cooked meals to the poor. During my school days, I used to visit the Sai Baba Temple every Thursday and give food to the poor, there. I also realised that there were many people like me looking to feed the poor, but no one had any idea where to come together or whom to contact. So, I started a group on Facebook, and voila, Food Bank was born,” she explains. “We believe in giving home-cooked food for the homeless. When we help someone, we have to give it our all and serve them nothing but the best. No halfway measures, here.”

Today, Food Bank has 8,000 Facebook members. Sneha has Whatsapp groups for each area and there are volunteers who go around collecting food in their respective areas. Members distribute around 150 to 200 packets everyday.

“Once word got around about what I was doing, I began receiving calls from people in Goa, Faridabad, Mumbai, Pune, Delhi and other places, asking me about how they could set up food banks too,” she says. “Now, four months after we got started, we have 8,000 members and counting. Hopefully, other cities too will see enthusiastic volunteers, raring to go to help those in need!”

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2020 2:49:40 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/kids/sneha-mohandoss-does-more-than-just-socialising-on-social-media-she-finds-ways-to-feed-the-hungry-and-homeless/article7818367.ece

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