Chennai

COVID-19: Chennai residents contribute essential items to Corporation’s community kitchen

The community kitchen established in Ambattur Old Town is meant to feed migrant workers who are now out of work

Residents of Thiruvengada Nagar in Ambattur Old Town (OT) are assisting Zone 7 officials of Greater Chennai Corporation in their efforts to run a community kitchen to feed migrant workers, rendered out of work by the COVID-19 crisis.

The residents have donated 100 kilograms of rice, 10 kilograms of toor daal and 10 litres of edible oil to the civic officials.

“We got the nod from our residents about making a contribution towards the functioning of the community kitchen, by discussing the matter in our WhatsApp group. Immediately, within an hour, we mobilised adequate funds to buy the essential items,” says S. Suresh, secretary, Thiruvengada Nagar Residents Welfare Association.

Residents have pointed out that during two notable crises in the past — the 2015 floods and cyclone Vardah a year later in December 2016 — they personally carried out the relief work through their residents’ associations by providing free food, blankets and clothes to the affected persons in the region. In contrast, this time, they handed over the essential relief items to the zonal officer of Zone - 7 in Ambattur, due to factors such as social distancing and the need for coordinated efforts.

Thiruvengada Nagar has 1,000 households spread across 10 streets and two main roads. Most of the residents are employed in the government sector and the industrial units in Pattaravakkam, Athipet and Ambattur.

Association members point out that during the ongoing lockdown, they have been taking utmost care in ensuring residents stay at home, by having resident-volunteers in every street monitor if if there is any movement of people.

Residents say that contribution in terms of providing free essential items to community kitchen will continue, but at the individual level, due to the challenge involved in organising such a relief work together as a community, when social distancing has to be practised.

“We have asked our residents not to wait for the Association to organise drives to help the civic body in this manner, Instead, through WhatsApp, we have clearly instructed them to make such contributions directly to the civic body. Our residents’ association will also have a record of such contributions made by our residents,” says Suresh.

(If you are aware of such an initiative by any other residents’ welfare association, write in to us at downtownfeedback@thehindu.co.in)

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Printable version | Jun 1, 2020 11:50:38 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/covid-19-chennai-residents-contribute-essential-items-to-corporations-community-kitchen/article31210675.ece

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