These Chennai residents are strapped for cash, but still help the needy

The residents now need help with funds to continue with their initiative. Photo: Special Arrangement   | Photo Credit:

Residents of Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board (TNSCB) tenements in Perumbakkam have been pooling in money and resources and feeding over 300 elderly residents, including persons with disabilities, who are struggling without food during the lockdown.

Siragugal (wings) is a resident welfare association of Block C of the Perumbakkam TNSCB tenements. There are over 25 members in the association, and some of them are office attendants, plumbers and cab drivers and a earn monthly income around ₹10,000, while many are daily wage earners.

“From June 1, the owner of a farmhouse supplied some food for those struggling in the tenements. However due to logistical issues, this was discontinued after five days. But every day, around, noon the beneficiaries, including the elderly and disabled, used to come and wait. We felt very bad about this and decided to start serving food by pooling money,” said Alamelu Bhaskar, a member of the association.

Though most only earn small sums every month, each member put in some money and purchased groceries. “We already had some vessels and each resident took turns to provide cooking gas cylinders. Since June 6, we have been feeding 300 people every day. It costs around ₹5,000 per day to feed 300 people,” she added.

Some youngsters from the locality also provided Rs. 200. “The elderly people who came here were working as watchmen and domestic helps. But due to lack of transport, they are unable to go for work and hence are struggling for food. Besides, the number of persons with disabilities who come for food is increasing. They are also unable to go for work,” said D. Ravichandran, another member.

However, the group is running out of funds. “It will be helpful if people help us with groceries to make the food. We do not want cash. They can also look in on us us so that they can confirm that their donations are used properly,” added Ms. Alamelu.

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Printable version | Jul 30, 2021 10:26:06 AM |

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