Good Samaritan from UPES supplies free meals in Dehradun
Offering humanitarian service in the midst of surging Covid cases, Prof. Jharna Joshi from UPES School of Design is making doorstep delivery of meals to affected people
With the nation reeling under the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, several individuals are coming forward to help the affected, poor, and migrant labourers. While some are helping people get oxygen cylinders and medication, others are inquiring about the availability of hospital beds.
Prof. Jharna Joshi from UPES School of Design is one such example of compassion. She has been providing doorstep delivery of cooked meals for the patients and their families. After seeing several family members and relatives struggling for a healthy diet and medicines during their treatment, Prof. Joshi decided to supply home-cooked food to them, all free of cost.
“The food is cooked at my home. I provide simple food consisting of one daal, green vegetable, and salad. This is healthy and nutritious. Till now I have managed to arrange for 10-15 families every day. I deliver the food myself in disposable food containers so there is no hassle of washing and cleaning afterwards, says she.”
Jharna Joshi is an Associate Professor in UPES School of Design. She holds an M.Des degree from National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT), New Delhi. Her area of specialisation is knitwear technology, pattern making and crafts.
Juggling between online classes and taking orders through WhatsApp to making sure the food is delivered to the houses of the Covid-19 patients, Prof. Joshi does it all by herself. She says that these are difficult times and we all must do our bit to help each other.
The procurement of ration and cooking is not a big task for Prof. Joshi as she has done this before as well. It is the delivery of the food which sometimes becomes an issue. But despite that this one-woman army makes sure that the food reaches people who need it and on time.
Is she worried about putting herself at risk of infection by going out for deliveries? To this, Prof. Joshi says, “I am taking all the precautionary measures. I have been administered both shots of the vaccination. Also, I wear double masks and a face shield to protect myself. While delivering the food, I just keep the packets at the doorstep without meeting anyone.”
So, what prompted her to go out of her way to lend a helping hand? Prof. Joshi says, “It is difficult for virus-infected people to get meals while living in self-isolation. There is a sense of complete satisfaction that I get when I can help Covid-19 patients who need assistance. Moreover, it keeps me away from negativity and acts as a stressbuster. I do not charge people anything for food. The only request I make is that people who have tested positive should come clean about their status. Not disclosing this information is wrong.”
Prof. Joshi has always believed that serving people in distress is equal to serving humanity and serving humanity is the best form of worship. “I started this initiative on my own and now I am glad my friends and colleagues are extending help,” she says, before rushing off to make good on her commitments for the day.