Published: 02nd April 2020
How FICCI FLO is helping Bhubaneswar's migrant workers amidst lockdown
The focus of both the organisations is on the elderly, pregnant women, migrant workers, daily wage labourers and other vulnerable people in Odisha. They have reached out to over 1,000 people
It was on March 28 that FICCI FLO Bhubaneswar Chapter decided to help all migrant workers and slum dwellers during the lockdown brought on by the spread of Coronavirus. Dharitri Patnaik, Chairperson Designate of FICCI FLO Bhubaneswar Chapter, and other members decided to provide the poor and needy in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack with two hot meals a day.
Maintaining social distance | (Pic: HBT)
After lockdown, they enlisted the help of a catering agency and with help from Arpita Pattnaik, Executive Director, Humara Bachpan Trust (HBT), started distributing meals in Bhubaneswar. "We were also getting several calls from our circles saying many migrant workers have nowhere to go. They have their ration cards but those are either lost or are back in their native place, thus, they are unable to avail help from the government either. That's why we decided to step in," she shares. With the help of their volunteers, they are distributing hot meals in areas like Ramakrushna Leprosy Colony, Rickshaw Colony, Pradhan Sahi, Behera Sahi, Panda Park and many others. They even received calls about 60 migrant labourers stranded near Bhubaneswar railway station, so they are distributing there as well. The officials of Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation have given them their permission and support.
Distributing food | (Pic: HBT)
Since April 1, HBT has been distributing hot meals in Cuttack as well, thanks to funds from Netaji Subhas Memorial City College and the cooperation of Cuttack Municipal Corporation and Cuttack police, Arpita informs us. Khichdi, dal chawal and other food is distributed keeping in mind nutritional value, social distancing and hygiene.
Their poster | (Pic: HBT)
Another interesting way that FICCI FLO Bhubaneswar Chapter and HBT are helping in these testing times is through ASHA, a helpline for those going through mental stress and trauma. It is run by those certified and experienced psycho-social counsellors who even helped during the 1999 Odisha cyclone. Counselling is done in Odia, Hindi and English.