Delhi-based Feeding India is fighting hunger and food wastage by setting up happy fridges across India; it aims to install 500 community fridges to help the underprivileged.
Dissing leftovers and food scraps into the garbage bin has become commonplace in most households these days. But what we don’t realise is that while we are binning good food, someone, somewhere – a child, a labourer, a family - goes to sleep hungry.
The Global Hunger Index 2018 places India at a shocking 103rd place among 119 countries, behind many underdeveloped African nations and neighbours Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Nepal. As many as 1.3 million children die of hunger annually in India. More than 53 percent of women between the ages of 15-49 have anaemia. Hunger has killed more people globally than AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis combined.
In India, food wastage amounts to Rs 58,000 crore every year. The main reasons? Lack of awareness and ignorance on what can be done.
This is the gap that Feeding India, a New Delhi-based non-profit NGO, hopes to bridge. The NGO, which has been working for the last four years to reduce food wastage and eradicate hunger, started the #FightFoodWaste campaign, on October 16, 2018, on the occasion of World Food Day.
The initiative, which will continue till October 31, involves the setting up of 500 “happy fridges” across India. These community refrigerators will allow people to donate food. Accessible to all passers-by, they will let children, workers and domestic help pick up a meal or a snack, and assuage their hunger.
A report in The Logical Indian said the NGO is following a completely eco-friendly policy. Food in single-use plastic packets or containers is not allowed; only paper boxes, bags or reusable containers can be placed in the fridge. These community fridges will be installed at people’s doorstep so donating food become easier.
For the people, by the people
Feeding India has set up 100 happy fridges across the country as of now, and is seeking people’s help to install the 500 that it proposes. It says one happy fridge can help people serve 1,500-20,000 meals a month.
The NGO has, till now, channelised extra food from individual homes, weddings, restaurants and corporate offices, and directed it to the hungry. With a presence in over 100 cities, the non-profit also offers freshly cooked food or raw materials to shelters, homes, and beneficiaries.
How can you help? An online form, a location with access to electricity, and interest is all it takes to set up a happy fridge. Hunger heroes from Feeding India will help set it up and spread awareness so people can donate food instead of wasting it.
Reports say over 260 million Indians go to sleep hungry, which means India is home to over 25 percent of the world’s hungry population. Setting up more happy fridges could help bring this number down.