A school in Durgapur has distributed ration to 450 families living nearby, many of who were going hungry and some barely managing to feed their children during the lockdown.
Guru Teg Bahadur Public School took the initiative after four senior students from NCC approached the principal with a request to provide food to families of daily wage earners, rickshaw-pullers and domestic help without any income at present.
The four students of Class X — Banty Mondal, Sarbani Chakraborty, Swastika Prasad and Simran Singh —and their NCC teacher Spiti Sen toured six neighbourhoods in the city and its fringes over a week to spread awareness among residents about handwashing, precautions to take while coughing, social distancing and how to wear a mask when one steps out. During the visit, they came across many families who had barely anything to eat and did not know when the situation would improve.
“The purpose of our visit was to make them aware of the coronavirus outbreak so that they follow the lockdown and maintain social distancing and personal hygiene. But while talking to them, we realised they were in a poor condition,” Mondal said.
Sen said it was the girls who had taken the initiative. “We wanted the parents’ approval and we identified the areas where awareness is very low and used a school vehicle to commute,” the teacher said.
After the girls approached the principal, the school decided to help residents of one neighbourhood, about a kilometre from the school. Two cleaners hired by the school live in the locality.
“The girls, with the help of the cleaners, identified the most needy families and gave them coupons. On Tuesday, they collected the ration,” said principal Sutapa Acharya.
The school raised ration by appealing to students, ex-students, teachers, trustees and friends. People pitched in with rice, pulses, wheat flour and oil. “We accepted money only from ex-students. The rest contributed food items,” Acharya said.
The families of 400 of the school’s 3,000 students and many ex-students came forward to help.
The ration was distributed in the parking lot of the school on Tuesday.
Each family received 2kg rice, 1kg potato, 500 grams pulses, a packet of salt and half litre oil.
Source: The Telegraph