Covid 19 is now wreaking havoc in more than 130 countries in the world. It is destroying livelihood of so many people and till now more than 80000 people have lost their lives with number of people infected close to 1,4million. Europe and USA are the worst affected. The number of cases in India is also more than 5000. Supply chains are affected across the world, several manufacturing and other companies are shut temporarily and lot of countries have gone for lock downs for different time periods. Still the search is on for the cure or vaccine and no one knows when the infections will come to an end. In countries like India with 1.3 billion population, the basic question arises during the period of lockdown; how the poor can be fed. This is where the concept of community kitchen comes in. In states like Kerala in India, community kitchen has come to the forefront in delivering what is needed most, food.
One such case study is community kitchen delivered by all woman establishment called as Kudumbashree mission in Kerala (a state in India). The program started off as a commercial eatery run by government but now it is serving different type of people. The initiative is now helping poor and needy people who are not able to work now and hence there is no source of income. The needy ones are given food free or with minimal charges depending on the list made by the volunteers. The volunteers find out the poor people, make the food and deliver it at designated places. This initiative is there in most of the wards of the state with the support of government. Social distancing is maintained during the serving and hygiene is maintained at each and every step of food delivery. The process makes sure that the lockdown in the country does not affect the basic necessity of humans, food. The process is done with the care active interventions of the officials of the respective wards but the main contributions are given by the volunteers and the main team at each respective ward. There is cooperation at ward level, district level and state level so as to ensure that food is always available to the needy ones. Some of these teams also take care of animals and birds by providing them food. This is helping the state to concentrate on prevention of spread of Covid 19 more as there is cooperation from these initiatives to take care of people.
All these are done by people who are helping others though the infection can affect them also. These kinds of endeavours are helping places like Kerala to combat such a disease and come out strong by helping common man to stand on their feet. These efforts will keep reminding the world that innovative methods can be found out to help the common man during the time of the lockdown and stringent measures and at the same time social distancing can be maintained. As the world is moving through turbulent times, efforts like these go a long way in keeping the spirit up to defeat the disease and come out stronger.
Dr Ranjith P.V, Associate Professor, CMS Business School, JAIN deemed to be University (Bangalore, India) and Dr Uma Warrier, Professor and Chief Counsellor, JAIN deemed to be University (Bangalore, India)