The community kitchen started during the peak of the pandemic has been able to serve over 200,000 meals to medical frontline workers across six government hospitals in Bengaluru.
Bengaluru, January 2— “It is not how much we give, but how much love is put in the giving,” saint Mother Teresa had once said. People from different communities and walks of life joined hands in Bengaluru to serve meal to the frontline warriors during the lockdown.
“We have Christians, we have Sikhs, we have Muslims and even those who don’t believe in anyone but are still uniting to serve during this pandemic. Where we are serving everybody irrespective of caste, creed, or religion,” said Mohammed Umer from Project Smile.
(Courtesy: South Asia Monitor . A Positive Journalism Feature supported by Frank Islam Foundation)
This text story is based on the short video documentary above:
Bengaluru, India’s globally known IT hub, is rendering a different service during this pandemic. A unique multi-denominational collaboration – The Doctor’s Kitchen – demonstrates how citizens have come together to support frontline warriors like doctors and nurses in the Covid-19 battle. The community kitchen was started during the peak of the pandemic and has been able to serve over 200,000 meals to medical frontline workers across six government hospitals in Bengaluru. Volunteers from United Sikhs, Project Smile, Bengaluru Samaritans, Mercy Mission and Yuvalok Foundation joined hands to cook and serve hot meals to the first-response teams of the Coronavirus. More volunteers, including IT professionals, management specialists and people from different walks of life, united to support the cause.
Bhaskar Rajkumar, a doctor, said: “Real service to humanity is when we solve the problem of hunger. When the Covid-19 pandemic started the biggest worry was how to get food. The other problem was how to reach food to doctors in hospitals. Covid warriors were working in emergency rooms and volunteers on the field.”
Umer said: “Proper nutrition was becoming a challenge. This was just one such fantastic initiative during the Covid-19 pandemic.”
Sam Rajashekhar from Yuvalok Foundation said: “When I heard about the Doctor’s Kitchen, I thought to myself, ‘Wonderful’. If we can serve them and see how best they can be supported.”
Umer said: “We served 1.5 million rotis (bread) to the migrants during the lockdown along with our Sikh brothers from the United Sikhs.”
Through this community initiative, they are serving hygienic and wholesome meals to doctors on duty. These doctors seldom visited their homes during the pandemic. The groups together raised funds by collecting groceries to provide home-cooked meals to medical personnel working in tedious shifts.
Mrs Reena Chowdhury, a volunteer, said: “I approached my building and community. About 30-40 chefs agreed to serve nearly 170 meals. Therefore, we were able to provide good, home-made, tasty, less oily and nutritious meals for our frontline workers.”
Religion is no barrier in testing times, with the pandemic not only throwing up new challenges but new opportunities as well for society to live and work together.
Rajashekhar said: “I have never seen this before. People from different communities and faiths deciding to work together. We have been smiling at each other, holding hands, and that was the best thing that happened.”
Umer from Project Smile said: “We believe this is the real India, loving India, and caring India. This is our blessed country.”
“I hope this keeps on growing. The harmony and unity in India is going to make a difference to the entire world,” said Rajshekhar of Yuvalok Foundation.
Dr Bhaskar Rajkumar said: “All I can say is: Thank you so much for all that you have done for us- Doctor’s Kitchen”.
“I like the religion that teaches liberty, equality and fraternity,” Dr B R Ambedkar, the father of the Indian Constitution, had said.