The coronavirus pandemic may be testing the limits of human will and perseverance, bringing down our spirits and making the possibility of life returning to normal look like a distant dream. However, some good Samaritans are going out of their way, not only by providing food and books to the needy, but by doing it in the most unique way, and restoring hope for many. Mumbai’s Sion Friends Circle group has come forward once again with a helping hand in this lockdown by distributing books and foods to needy people in Mumbai. Previously the group had set up a mobile book house in Sion that provided free books.
The members of the group wore costumes of cartoon characters and distributed study material to the students in slum areas.Ashok Kurmi, the president of the group, said, “As the schools are closed due to coronavirus and students are bored sitting at homes, so we have come up with new ideas to distract students from this pandemic situation. We all have dressed up in their favourite cartoon characters like Disney, Micky Mouse, elephants and other famous cartoon characters to distribute study material to them.”
“They enjoyed a lot by watching us and this inspires these students, we are not stopping here at Sion only, We will go to many slums areas in Mumbai to distribute study materials to the students as this is a difficult time for them too,” he added.
“It feels good we have received a pencil and a book too and now they will study at home,” Darshan, a student of class V said.
Another student from a slum at Antop Hill said, “Uncle has distributed us this study material which includes books, pencils, wax crayon colours which we will use now to continue our study.”
Previously, the Sion Friend’s Circle group had come up with the wonderful initiative of operating a mobile book house in Sion, from which students could take books for free, and donate those they didn’t need. This helped several students who couldn’t buy books as they were unavailable in the market on account of the pandemic.
About the initiative, which took off early June, Ashok Kurmi said, “We have named this store–free book house. Our group has taken this initiative with the aim of providing books to the people in need amid the current situation. We prepared a mobile book store which does not need any fuel to work, it’s a handcart. We will move this store across Sion on a weekly basis.” Parents and students lauded the efforts of the group, which helped many children and proved beneficial in times of crisis.