Published: 31st August 2018
How Facebook group Mana Miryalaguda is getting NRIs to give back to the underprivileged in districts back home
The Facebook page is the brainchild of a government employee Mannem Sridhar Reddy of Miryalaguda in Nalgonda district, Telangana who donates more than 40 per cent of his salary to the underprivileged
A 7-year-old boy with thalassemia, Sameer, needed treatment but his father, a daily wage labourer, found it difficult to even make ends meet. Kousik, a Class XI student lost all hope of studying further when his father was in an accident. Asifa, a septuagenarian, was suffering from lung cancer but could not pay for the treatment. All these people are back on their feet thanks to one entity — Mana Miryalaguda, a Facebook group that helps people in need. Sameer and Asifa were given Rs 50,000 each for their treatment while Kousik's educational costs were taken care of and he cleared EMACET and is set to start his BSc Agricultural Studies classes.
The Facebook page is the brainchild of Mannem Sridhar Reddy of Miryalaguda in Nalgonda district, Telangana who donates more than 40 per cent of his salary towards these causes. He had started helping schools in his area with their infrastructural facilities, by donating stationery and furniture for the classrooms. "I started off with one school. Gradually, I got to know about more schools which needed help in some way or the other," said 41-year-old Mannem, whose inspiration is his father who also helped local schools every Independence and Republic Day before he died in a Maoist attack in 1998.
Lending a helping hand through Facebook: The online group lets Mannem Sridhar Reddy connect with people around the globe
"I focused on the students' needs by providing drawing kits, school bags, sports equipment, benches and desks, projectors, arranging for playgrounds, and conducting drawing competition for government schools in our town and gift bicycles to the winners. Almost 500 children attend from 10 schools," said Reddy. "We provided a clean playground for a school in Mukundhampuram, 20 km from our town. They are now famous for their volleyball team, around 10 to 15 children have been selected for national level and state level under-14 junior championships. In the same school, we have cleared all the bushes and started cultivation of vegetables. The children can now consume organic food that they have grown themselves."
The online group lets him connect with people around the globe.
Durgavanmala, who is from my town stays in the USA now. He sent us a projector for ease of learning in the classroom. Vasu Vishwantha provided 2,000 books and guides for Class X students in our area. TCAP (Telangana Cultural Association of Portland, USA) has adopted two children from the Muckundhapuram school who had discontinued their education after Class X. I personally met them and enrolled them for their intermediate (10+2) studies
Mannem Sridhar Reddy, Founder, Mana Miryalaguda
Till date, they have distributed 4,500 school bags, 200 benches, and desks, 5000 drawing books, for ten schools they had also arranged sports goods, 3,000 geometric boxes, 5000 books etc. But he is not just helping the school children. "We have started an initiative to promote rejection of plastic bags," said Reddy, who has not just distributed 60,000 jute bags but is also following an incentive-based model to promote the ban of plastics. "We have put up banners in all chicken and mutton shops asking people to bring tiffin boxes instead of plastic carry bags. Those who send me a photo to me carrying a tiffin box, I transfer Rs 100 immediately."