NASI decided to take up two National Projects in 2014 out of which one was the Fistful of Grain. This project is an ongoing successful project of SI Bangalore and they had suggested this as a National Project.This was selected as a NASI Project since it is easy to implement and is highly effective in working towards the SIGBI Theme of Food security .It also builds social awareness and empathy among school children about the need to be sensitive to others especially the underprivileged and gets them to take some action on the same. The project also is a way to engage young people in playing their part in building the nation.
The significance of the project is also derived from the fact that 1/3rd of hungry people live in India. 44% of 44% of children under 5 are underweight.India is also amongst the most under-nourished in peer group nations. This project therefore gains importance.
The Project seeks the involvement of students from elite schools and colleges .Each student is given a eco-friendly jute bag with the Name of NASI/Club etc on it.The students are asked to take the jute bags home . Every day they are asked to put in a fistful of grain ( any type of grain or lentil) in the bag.They are then to get the bag to school every month .The SI Club members collect the bags ,empty the same into a bigger container and donate the grain to orphanages,remand homes ,schools for the under-privileged students .This enables them to improve in their health and nutrition status.
All SI Clubs of NASI agreed to take on this Project and we are happy with the success of this. Different clubs have taken on the project with slight changes from the original format .However the end objective remains the same:building Food Security for the hungry and underprivileged.
Given below are some of the activities under this Project by the various Clubs in the period (June –November 2016)
- SI Chennai: On an average 276 bags of grains are distributed. Each bag contains at least 1.5 kg. Juvenoptomists conducted the “Fistful Of Grain” project.
- SIBC collaborated with PCER college and CEHS school for this project on 10th OCTOBER 2016.The project aimed in providing grains such as (rice and dal) to the underprivileged section in our society. The beneficiaries of this project were the inmates of an NGO- Access Life in Deonar, who were undergoing treatment for cancer, so the grains collected have been able to provide for their meals for more than a week.
- SI Poona members had decided to make individual cash donations every quarter for the Fistful of Grain project. An amount of Rs. 6000/- collected in October, was handed over to the orphanage at the Sangise village near Pune for purchasing pulses and sugar. We propose to continue this practice and donate to an old age home or orphanage every quarter.
- SI Calcutta collaborated with 2 reputed local schools, namely Modern High School for Girls and Silver Point School, and were able to collect about 140 kgs of rice which were distributed to organizations which conduct community meal programmes.
- SIPME donated grains and cereals to the children of Ambedkar Basti on the occasion of World Food Day.
- SI South Kolkata distributed eco-friendly jute bags to children of affluent schools and asked them to collect grain /cereals for distribution to under-privileged