India is a land of celebrations where people rejoice with lights, colors; and delicious food – much of which is wasted after the party is over. Twenty five-year-old Ankit Kawatra has been redistributing the left-over food to the poor and needy for which he has been selected by the United Nations for the inaugural class of Young Leaders for Sustainable Development.
“I worked in a global business advisory firm for two years. One day, I went to a celebrity wedding where there were around 10,000 people invited and more than 35 cuisines were laid for them. I decided to stay back to see what happened with the food. To my shock and despair, heaps of leftover food was thrown straight into the bin which could have fed 5,000 people just that single night,” Ankit says.
This led him to set up Feeding India, an NGO which claims to have fed 1 million meals with a network of 2,000 volunteers across 28 cities of India. The NGO was established in 2014 and the volunteers are known as hunger heroes. They work towards eradicating hunger and malnutrition in India by redistributing excess food from weddings, corporate, canteens, banquets, and households.
As part of the initiative, Ankit has undertaken several projects in the past two years, including an innovative idea of ‘The Magic Truck’, which is a 24X7 refrigerated vehicle moving around the city collecting and donating excess food.
Around 20 crore Indians sleep on an empty stomach every day. If we can try and manage excess food, we can reduce hunger to a considerable level – Ankit
The NGO has adopted many donation centers across the city as well as many self-run schools and shelter homes for children, elderly and specially-abled. They provide them with nutritious and well-balanced meals for free. You can also donate your excess food and provide monetary support to help Ankit in his Feeding India mission.