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COVID-19 Warriors: Meet Mumbai’s Mother-Son Duo Who Have Been Feeding Hundreds Of Needy People Daily Amid The Pandemic

Through their tiffin service, Mumbai-based Heena Mandavia and her son Harsh have served over 27,000 homecooked meals to the poor and homeless amid the COVID-19 pandemic

COVID-19 Warriors: Meet Mumbai’s Mother-Son Duo Who Have Been Feeding Hundreds Of Needy People Daily Amid The Pandemic
Highlights
  • The mother-son duo started ‘feed the needy’ service last year
  • In May 2020, a customer asked us to feed 100 people on his behalf: Harsh
  • Their initiative has been able to raise Rs 27 lakh from across the globe

New Delhi: A health crisis that has caused immense economic distress due to lockdowns, the COVID-19 pandemic has proved to be a threat to life and livelihood. In these difficult times, 49-year-old Heena Mandavia and her 26-year-old son Harsh have been serving homecooked meals free of cost to the poor and needy in Mumbai.

Ms Mandavia started a tiffin service, ‘Harsh Thali And Parathas’ in 1999 after her husband died in a car accident. Last year, when the pandemic hit, this mother-son duo converted their tiffin delivery kitchen into a ‘feed the needy’ service. They started feeding the hungry during the first lockdown and during the second wave of the pandemic also they continued to cook tirelessly and feed the hungry. Ms Mandavia said,

I started a tiffin service in 1999, my son was six years old and at that time, I did not have grains, vegetables or even utensils for providing people a tiffin. But I had to do something for my and my son’s survival and so with the help of my neighbours and friends I managed to start my business. Many strangers had also helped to reach the level where I am today. Because of this I always wanted to do something for the society. Always wanted to give back.

Also Read: Actor Jacqueline Fernandez Distributes Meals To The Needy In Mumbai Amid COVID-19 Crisis

Talking about the journey of their ‘Feed the Needy’ initiative, Harsh said that there is always some worry about getting infected as they are required to go out to serve people but knowing that a lot of people need their help motivates them to keep their fears aside and do their duty. He shared that they started feeding people for free after one of their regular customers inspired them by asking them to feed 100 people on his behalf. He said,

In the month of May last year, I got a call from our regular customer who told me that he wants to feed 100 poor people. But he didn’t want to step out because of the COVID-19 pandemic. So, he asked us if we can go out and feed them. That was the first day when we went out and fed the people outside a Gurudwara in Malad. On the same evening, I put up an appreciation post on social media along with pictures and videos of the food donation drive. That connected us with the people online and people started donating money from all over. After that we have not looked back and every day tirelessly, we cook and serve over 100 meals.

Ms Mandavia and her son have served more than 27,000 meals in the past 13 months that has covered more than thousands of poor people including those living in slums, old age homes, orphanages. Harsh added,

We also try catering to people from different segments of the society like watchmen, rickshaw drivers, garbage collectors among others who couldn’t get food while working during the daytime.

According to Ms Mandavia, the initiative also aims to provide employment to a few women who lost their jobs during the pandemic. She said,

That was a big thing for me, because I have been through the same situation in my life. A lot of people helped me to reach the level that I am at today. So, I thought I want to help some ladies too.

Also Read: Anupam Kher Donates Oxygen Concentrators, Bilevel Positive Airway Pressure Machines To Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation For COVID Crisis

Poonam Patil who is a teacher and her husband, a make-up artist by profession lost their jobs due to the pandemic. For many days they faced financial problems. Ms Patil was then employed by Ms Mandavia to help out in cooking for her initiative. Ms Patil said,

Because of the pandemic, we lost our jobs and there was no source of income. Thanks to Heena ji’s initiative, we are able to get some work and earn some income and are able to do our bit in helping the needy during the difficult times.

According to Harsh, the initiative has been receiving financial support from all across the globe. He said that to help them continue and expand their food donation drive, over Rs 27 lakh has been raised so far through social media. He said,

The encouragement that we have been receiving helped us feed the poor and spread smiles even during challenging times like these.

Also Read: COVID Warriors: Mumbai Doctor Couple Starts ‘Meds For More’, Collects Over 125 Kgs Of Unused COVID Medicines

NDTV – Dettol Banega Swasth India campaign is an extension of the five-year-old Banega Swachh India initiative helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. It aims to spread awareness about critical health issues facing the country. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (WaterSanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign highlights the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children to prevent maternal and child mortality, fight malnutrition, stunting, wasting, anaemia and disease prevention through vaccines. Importance of programmes like Public Distribution System (PDS), Mid-day Meal Scheme, POSHAN Abhiyan and the role of Aganwadis and ASHA workers are also covered. Only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and become a Swasth or healthy India. The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollutionwaste managementplastic banmanual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene

World

26,10,35,501Cases
22,18,42,204Active
3,39,98,278Recovered
51,95,019Deaths
Coronavirus has spread to 196 countries. The total confirmed cases worldwide are 26,10,35,501 and 51,95,019 have died; 22,18,42,204 are active cases and 3,39,98,278 have recovered as on November 28, 2021 at 3:39 am.

India

3,45,72,523 8,774Cases
1,05,6911,328Active
3,39,98,278 9,481Recovered
4,68,554 621Deaths
In India, there are 3,45,72,523 confirmed cases including 4,68,554 deaths. The number of active cases is 1,05,691 and 3,39,98,278 have recovered as on November 28, 2021 at 2:30 am.

State Details

State Cases Active Recovered Deaths
Maharashtra

66,33,612 507

11,905 248

64,80,799 738

1,40,908 17

Kerala

51,29,359 4,741

49,152 957

50,40,528 5,144

39,679 554

Karnataka

29,95,285 322

6,783 143

29,50,306 176

38,196 3

Tamil Nadu

27,24,731 740

8,382 36

26,79,895 765

36,454 11

Andhra Pradesh

20,72,446 248

2,158 5

20,55,856 253

14,432

Uttar Pradesh

17,10,373 5

86 5

16,87,377 9

22,910 1

West Bengal

16,14,152 701

7,820 27

15,86,882 717

19,450 11

Delhi

14,40,834 27

290 11

14,15,448 37

25,096 1

Odisha

10,48,492 264

2,222 6

10,37,864 255

8,406 3

Chhattisgarh

10,06,733 27

326 7

9,92,814 20

13,593

Rajasthan

9,54,741 26

187 13

9,45,599 13

8,955

Gujarat

8,27,382 28

291 17

8,16,999 45

10,092

Madhya Pradesh

7,93,120 23

112 9

7,82,480 14

10,528

Haryana

7,71,654 11

159 1

7,61,441 10

10,054

Bihar

7,26,212 3

39 6

7,16,510 9

9,663

Telangana

6,75,479 160

3,545 11

6,67,946 148

3,988 1

Assam

6,16,435 123

2,720 71

6,07,624 189

6,091 5

Punjab

6,03,190 17

313 22

5,86,284 39

16,593

Jharkhand

3,49,216 20

109 0

3,43,967 20

5,140

Uttarakhand

3,44,183 14

150 6

3,36,626 8

7,407

Jammu And Kashmir

3,36,386 149

1,724 5

3,30,189 141

4,473 3

Himachal Pradesh

2,26,941 82

809 18

2,22,287 97

3,845 3

Goa

1,78,839 40

275 9

1,75,183 31

3,381

Mizoram

1,34,279 358

4,117 110

1,29,672 466

490 2

Puducherry

1,28,860 35

326 5

1,26,662 30

1,872

Manipur

1,25,117 19

673 1

1,22,474 18

1,970 2

Tripura

84,784 13

89 9

83,874 3

821 1

Meghalaya

84,414 20

308 27

82,635 44

1,471 3

Chandigarh

65,443 5

52 4

64,571 1

820

Arunachal Pradesh

55,269 9

37 4

54,952 5

280

Sikkim

32,211 4

114 5

31,694 9

403

Nagaland

32,100 4

135 1

31,269 5

696

Ladakh

21,494 27

249 6

21,032 21

213

Dadra And Nagar Haveli

10,683

1 0

10,678

4

Lakshadweep

10,394

28 1

10,315 1

51

Andaman And Nicobar Islands

7,680 2

5 2

7,546

129

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