Bengaluru: Event manager-couple and team feed 200 families daily | Bengaluru News – Times of India


Uma Rajeswari distributes food among the needy

BENGALURU: Kalyan Nagar resident Uma Rajeswari got a taste of what helplessness is when she, her husband Santosh Nair and both their children contracted Covid in mid-April. She decided she will not let anyone else feel as helpless as she did.
Aadya Foundation, started by Uma and her husband in 2015, is now distributing food to Covid positive patients, primary contacts in isolation and senior citizens, who aren’t able to cook for themselves. The couple runs an event management firm in the city.
“I had no choice but to cook for the family even when I was running a temperature. I did not want anyone else to feel this helplessness when sick,” said Uma.
During the first lockdown, Uma and her husband provided food at migrant and labour camps. Since the pandemic broke, they have been able to feed people and provide medicines to Covid+ve patients, who cannot afford them. Santosh is also working extensively to be able to help arrange beds for those in need.
Serving three meals a day
Uma and her volunteers pack simple South Indian vegetarian food in aluminium boxes to feed 200 families three times a day. Several other families, numbering close to 250, are provided food twice a day based on requests. “Initially, when we started, volunteers cooked at their homes and distributed food but, eventually, a few of them started coming down with Covid, which is when we decided to hire a restaurant close to Kalyan Nagar,” said Uma.
“We now prepare food in a centralised kitchen. I have also hired a help and a cook, who worked at a restaurant but has now lost his job,” she added.
Uma said the restaurant charges them a nominal rent, mostly for gas and the vessels used. Currently, they are supplying food mostly at KR Puram, but find a way to help anyone reaching out to them from other parts of the city. Distribution is done mostly through Dunzo and Porter. Very rarely do the volunteers step out, but if they do, they use two-wheelers.
The team has also been providing Covid-19 kits to people, who have tested positive. The kits mainly include a thermometer, fives pairs of gloves, an oxymeter and the prescribed medications. About 150 people have benefited from these kits.
Although the core of team Aadya mostly consists of 20 members, nearly 150 people from different parts of the city have joined them to help feed those in need. “When we started during the first wave, our neighbours, friends and relatives joined us and brought their contacts on board. Eventually, the team became what it is today through word of mouth,” said Uma.
Aadya is another name for goddess Durga and considering team Aadya mostly works with destitute women, children and the issue of menstrual hygiene, they used the name, explained Uma.
While the volunteers have also chipped in with money, donations from people who want to help have kept the initiative afloat.

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Sagar Biswas

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