Every Tuesday at Harmony Apartments, like-minded residents and outsiders meet up at 7 pm to prepare community meals for underprivileged children, forging new friendships in the process.
A lot can be done in just two hours, as shown by a group of like-minded friends who meet every Tuesday at Harmony Apartments in Sector 4 to cook for underprivileged children.
The journey began some 10 years back on a Tuesday with the combined efforts of a few determined friends. Ramesh Dhillor, Arvind Rudra , Vijay Kumar, Late Satish Gandotra and two caretakers, Ram Asray and Suresh Kumar, were the founding members of this humble initiative, which has now become a community affair.
Rudra, former general secretary of the society, and a founding member, shares, “We started small, with a few big utensils, a cylinder and a gas stove. On our first day, we made a curry of around five kg of potatoes and puris from two kg of flour. Our colony ladies —Ranjana Singh, Rajani Tagra and Asha Rudra — cooked the food, which was distributed by the team members. Soon, the word spread. Every household wanting to get involved was asked to donate a kg of potatoes, boiled and peeled. A few others were asked to donate dry ration, cooking ingredients and other items.”
He continues, “We start at 7 pm and wind up by around 9 pm. So with just two hours of involvement we are able to achieve something remarkable. Residents are free to use the utensils available with us for their personal functions, but of course, not on a Tuesday. The RWA can use it too.”
The initiative now has the support of residents from other societies as well, and that include Vivek from Hind Apartments, Ashish Mukherjee from Ispatika Apartments, and Prashant Tagra from Rosewood Apartments. Even the guests sometimes pitch in with the cooking and distribution.
What began as philanthropy has now become a great means to socialise.
Every Tuesday, people can be seen sipping tea, enjoying each other’s conversations and, of course, cooking.
Dhillor, who enjoys cooking, and always returns from office earlier on Tuesdays, shares, “This has now become a part of our lives — like a celebration of sorts, but with a purpose. Now, we make puris from 5 kg of wheat. Around 35 people, apart from the residents of the society, now contribute potatoes. So we are able to feed about a 100 children. This is a great platform to meet new people, share thoughts and do some good — all in the same breadth.”