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A hawker journey in Covid-19 Pandemic

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For 32-year-old vimla residing in a slum area at the national capital ,the lockdown period meant zero business. she a ran an eating joint on a hawker cart — . everyday she would set out her hawker cart to their usual spot near the furniture market and sell Chole kulche . she earned about Rs 400-Rs 500 a day, until the lockdown began on March 25.

For vimla and the eight members of his middle class joint family, the lockdown had been tough. The pandemic had brought their business to a screeching halt. “i run our hwaker cart on the roadside. For past two months we have closed it down because of lockdown. my hawker cart is our only source of only way of income and now our condition is very bad.” vimla had mentioned this to a our volunteer team in May.

our food project has played a crucial role in the COVID-19 response. Since our food Project was still on — where cooked meals and safety and hygiene kits were still being distributed — it was decided to rope in Jagga.

vimla was asked if she could prepare meals for about 200 people for two days, May 20-21. “Though this was great news, I was a little worried about preparing 100 meals on a such a short notice. So I roped in my family members — husband ,brother, mother, aunts — and some of my neighbours. The menu was decided — 100 packets each of pulao and curry (to eat), and roti and curry (packed) on both the days.” A water bottle and a banana each was to be given with the cooked meals.

The food was prepared and packed at our project location; this was very useful as they didn’t have to seek permission from the police. our volunteers were there to guide vimla on cleanliness and hygiene protocols. They were all provided with masks, hand gloves and head caps along with hand wash. The packing was done hygienically. The team ended up making 227 packets of food.

“The money we got from these two days came at a very crucial time for all of us,” said vimla’ husband. The decision to bring on board vimla served two purposes, one that Plan Care Foundation used a local business to complement its project thereby providing some income to the locals, and two, vimla is now confident of taking on big orders for food deliveries — a win-win situation.

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