Sparing a thought, time for the lesser mortals
By Meera Manu | Published: 13th September 2013 08:13 AM |
When Onam these days means splurging on new clothes and enjoying a family dine in with a sumptuous ‘onasadya’ - which now is just a phone call away, a few youngsters here are painting a different picture by bringing in the festive lights into the lives of the less privileged in society.
Aswathy Nair, a law student who has been serving food for people living on the streets, is giving them ‘onasadya’ and ‘onakkodi’ this Onam. For that, she is bringing them together to the Sri Chithira Thirunal Park, East Fort on the Uthradom day, which falls on Sunday.
“While bringing together those living on the streets, I have also invited some elderly women who lead a lonely life in their homes. I myself will serve them food and give ‘onakkodi,’” said Aswathy. Coming to know about the humble efforts she has been carrying out for long, many philanthropists have come forward with assistance, which too has helped her a good deal. Aswathy is also careful not to make her initiative too formal and wishes that in all sense it bears the warmth of a family affair.
Whereas, the young boys and girls of ‘Save a Rupee Spread a Smile (SARSAS), having decided to give new clothes, are aiming to reach out to a wider section. Their pick is the rehabilitation home for the beggars; Chilla, a home for the children of sex workers; and the tribal girls in Kottur. Last year, they had distributed ‘onakkodis’ to an orphanage.
“There are places which receive so little assistance that they struggle to find even clothes for everyday wear. We decided to find such places and make the inmates there happy this Onam. Before setting out to present them with ‘onakkodi’, we first enquired about their need,” said Sanju Soman, secretary of SARSAS.
Other than the bits and bytes donated by the SARSAS members, the volunteers spread the message across many to pool in enough money for the noble cause. They started with Kottur on Thursday and will conclude at Chilla on Saturday.
Meanwhile, the young members of VOYOU, the youth wing of the NGO Expressions India Society, have set aside their pocket money to offer a delectable ‘sadya’ on banana leaves and give ‘onakkodi’ to the inmates of Sathyanweshana Charitable Society at Minnamcode. “Our college friends were so happy to pool in money when they came to know about the cause. We are giving ‘onakkodis’ and serving ‘sadyas’ to 16 inmates and five ayahs who take care of them,” said Gauthami Venu Nair, convenor of VOYOU.