Amidst the coronavirus crisis and the consequent lockdown India’s tribal people are facing double difficulties - scarcity of food and lack of awareness about the preventive measures to curb spreading of the deadly disease.
With the UK now about to go into its fourth week of lockdown, people who would be struggling from one week to the next during normal times are now running out of money. Many are also sick or completely isolated in their homes without any family members. In this environment, more and more community groups are calling for free meals to help those in need.
“We see that because of the Coronavirus, more and more people are losing their jobs, and running out of money,” says ISKCON Hungary spokesperson Gandharvika Prema Dasi. “And they have no support. So the number of people in need has been growing.”
“These people have really been to hell and back,” he says. “And I knew it was most likely that they’d never had prasad before in their lives. So it was very gratifying to be able to give prasad to so many people who had never tasted it before," says Abhay Das.
Incessant rains pelted the South Indian state of Karnataka from late July until August 13th, causing widespread flooding, a death toll of 76, and damage to over 75,000 homes.
The Shantipur festival was first celebrated in the 15thcentury by the great saint Sri Advaita Acharya. The festival took place at his home in Shantipur on the occasion of the disappearance day of his spiritual master, Madhavendra Puri.
“There are so many families in Hungary who are on the edge of homelessness,” says ISKCON Hungary spokesperson Gandharvika Prema Dasi. “They are in debt, have no jobs, and without external help they struggle to maintain their lives and may lose their homes.”
ISKCON Food Relief Foundation (IFRF) provides midday meals to 250,000 children of more than 2,000 government schools in the four districts of Haryana- Gurugram, Palwal, Kurukshetra and Faridabad. The main objective of IFRF is to provide healthy and nutritious food to the children which helps them in physical and mental development.
Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL), the largest commercial enterprise in India joined hands with ISKCON Food Relief Foundation, Haryana.
Prasadam - sanctified vegetarian food - plays a vital role in everything Krishna devotees do. From doing outreach activities on the streets, to a huge festival in the temple, to a personal function, prasadam has to be there, otherwise the activity is considered incomplete.
Food for Life in London, an initiative from London’s Radha-Krishna Temple, has been feeding hot meals to the homeless for over 20 years, and in 2017 expanded its usual Monday to Thursday offering to include Fridays and Saturdays. Its incredible efforts were officially recognised in December 2017 when the chief organiser of the London-based service, Acyuta Charan dasa (Asish Soni), was honoured with a British Empire Medal (BEM) for voluntary and charitable services to homeless people.
Charity organization Food For All, run by Parasurama Das and other ISKCON devotees, is set to move out of its previous home at Bhaktivedanta Manor and into two purpose-built kitchens in London. The move will see Food For All triple its prasadam distribution.
As natural disaster after natural disaster continues to pummel the Americas, an 8.1 magnitude earthquake struck the Southwestern Mexican state of Oaxaca on September 9th. This was followed quickly by a 7.1 quake on September 19th in Mexico City.
Marie Avgeropoulos, one of the stars of popular American sci-fi TV series The 100, recently visited Food For Life Vrindavan’s Sandipani Muni School for underprivileged girls. Her visit marked the beginning of the #SheMustCount campaign, an initiative started and supported by the Lubert family and Without Exception Films in Los Angeles.
India’s mega kitchens on Nat Geo channel. In the show, celebrity chef Vikas Khanna introduces some of India’s mega kitchens.
During the month of Damodara, the Food For Life Society Malaysia and Bhaktivedanta Books Trading Sd. Bhd jointly organised a famous project in Malaysia, the Sastra Dana and Anna Dana (food and books distribution) program.
Food For Life Nepal & Shaheed Bhagat Singh Brigade works together to help Nepalese people after the earthquake.
A brave group of devotees have mounted a Food For Life effort and are preparing enough vegetarian food to distribute to 600 to 800 people every day in the war-ravaged city of Donetsk, South-East Ukraine. When Kishora Gopala Das, Yuthesvari Dasi and others at the ISKCON temple in Donetsk saw the situation escalate last year, they wanted to help citizens in affected areas.