Food Bank Chennai, a non-profitable charity that aims to feed the hungry in the city of Chennai, has announced a new concept known as “One Token = One Meal”. Since the floods in December of last year, Food Bank Chennai has been collecting home-cooked food from homes all over the city and distributing them to the needy.
The token costs Rs. 30 at restaurants and once purchased, needs to be deposited in the collection box at the cash counter. Once a week, the Food Bank volunteers comes to the restaurant and collect as many meals against the number of coupons that have been collected that week. So far, they’ve only tied up with 3 restaurants in the city, but have plans to bring more restaurants in for this initiative. If you visit any of these restaurants in the city, make sure you help out by buying a meal for the needy – Bay Leaf in Chromepet, Akshaya Bhavan in T. Nagar and Ganesh Bhavan in Anna Nagar.
Sneha Monhandas, founder of Food Bank Chennai, spoke to Deccan Chronicle about her initiative and said, “We wanted to involve more people in the noble cause of feeding the hungry in pursuit of creating a hunger-free India. We have been collecting food from people, but that was not enough to feed everyone since there are lakhs of people who go to bed with their stomach empty. Since we wanted to do something innovative to attract to more to the system, we thought of introducing token for meal.”
They have over 200 volunteers who take the home-cooked food and distribute it around the city and they insist on home-cooked and not leftovers. Anandh SG, a member of Food Bank Chennai said, “As a policy, the organisation does not accept leftover food and instead asks people to cook extra for two people so that fresh food can be given to people who need it. We insist for fresh cooked food since everyone is equal when it comes to eating and we are happy that the response so far is good.”
To build awareness for the initiative as well as the problem that we face in the city, they have a Facebook group that members can join and share their social media promotions with people around the city. If you’re interested in helping and know of more people who do want to help out, they can be contacted via Facebook or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Currently, they have food drives set up in these areas: Anna Nagar, T. Nagar, Egmore, Saidapet, Royapettah, Mylapore, Nanganallur, Velachery, OMR, Kolathur, Porur, Tambaram, Chromepet and Pallavaram.