Citizens care: How volunteers teamed up to feed the hungry

Volunteers serve food to the poor who lost their jobs during the lockdown in Guwahati. | Photo - Helping Hearts, Guwahati/Facebook

Until a month back, Qais Khan, 32, was just another guy-next-door to most in Delhi's Jamia Nagar. Today, 1,500 families look up to him with hopes in their eyes. And these are mostly strangers he had never met before.

Right after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a nationwide lockdown in March, Khan, a self-employed interior designer, had anticipated the humanitarian crisis that eventually spilled out onto the streets in the form of unending queues of hungry people waiting to collect food.

His first reaction was to crowdsource funds from within his locality in Shaheen Bagh. He then formed a citizen’s forum called 'United for Humanity'.

“While we knew the problem was big, our reach was limited. So, we first reached out to the poor in our own area and identified about 800 people,” Khan says.

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