Dainik Bhaskar asks readers, employees to help feed poor during lockdown

By Pawan Agarwal

Dainik Bhaskar

New Delhi, India

The unfortunate spread of COVID-19 has not only clawed at the lives of thousands of people, but has also created severe economic fallout due to the unprecedented lockdown in India.

While most of us have a sense of security about our lives, there are now millions in our country who have neither the necessary basics nor any work to help them feed their families during the lockdown. With a spike in unemployment and a huge drop in productivity, the poor have been hit the hardest.

To help this sizeable and vital section of our society in this dire situation, Dainik Bhaskar Group came up with an initiative called Sewa Parmo Dharma through its not-for-profit charitable trust, the Bhaskar Foundation. Sewa Parmo Dharma translates to, Service is the highest religion.

The Sewa Parmo Dharma initiative raised money to provide one week's worth of groceries to needy families.
The Sewa Parmo Dharma initiative raised money to provide one week's worth of groceries to needy families.

Under this initiative, Bhaskar asked its readers and employees to contribute to the cause. The total amount collected would then be used to provide one week of basic groceries to needy families. Also, the names of people who contributed US$27.70 or more would have their names listed in the newspaper. To maximise the participation, multiple payment gateways were made available to the readers.

It started with Dainik Bhaskar’s contribution of US$.70 and the contribution of employees who contributed one day of their salary for the noble cause. 

Executing an ambitious plan

While making grocery kits, all the rules were followed. To avoid crowd formation and to make the distribution systematic and organized, the volunteers  were accompanied by the police, and individual grocery kits were made for each family. Social distancing rules were followed during distribution. 

Each grocery kit contained:

  • 5 kilograms rice.
  • 5 kilograms wheat flour.
  • 2 kilograms pulses.
  • 2 kilograms potatoes.
  • 1 kilogram salt.
  • 1 litre oil.
  • 100 grams turmeric powder.
  • 100 grams chilli powder.
  • 1 bar of soap.

A series of print ads and editorial notes were published to make readers aware of this initiative. This was further supported with digital and social media promotion.

The ongoing initiative is also being shared through print and digital platforms to encourage more people to participate.

Early results show promise

As a result of the first phase of this ongoing campaign, a total of 7.1 Crore has been collected so far, and one week’s groceries have been provided 1 Lakh needy families across 40 cities in seven states.

To encourage further participation, Bhaskar announced that on every contribution, Bhaskar Group will add an extra 10% from our side.

Banner photo courtesy of StockSnap from Pixabay.

About Pawan Agarwal

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