In the aftermath of Cyclone Fani, while help has been pouring in from all quarters for Odisha, quite a few regions in its interiors are still reeling under the trail of destruction the cyclone has left behind. In an effort to expedite help to such regions and its communities, a group of five youths from Mumbai conducted an on-ground relief work between 15th to 18th June.
As part of the outreach programme Dhruv Mehta (12 years) along with Raahil Mehta (14 years), Manit Shah (16 years), Latisha Shah (23 years) and Yash Mehta (23 years) visited and conducted relief work in the tribal communities of Mayurbhanj.
The activity was organised by ‘Living To Change’ and ‘Mayurbhanj Foundation’, and received support from local entrepreneur – Akshita Bhanjdeo, Director of The Belgadia Palace in Mayurbhanj.
Mayurbhanj is a thick forest land that is home to a hundred different tribal communities. While cyclone Fani’s maximum damage is along Odisha’s coastal belt, its interiors too have been affected.
In Mayurbhanj the roofs of many houses have completely come off and others are partly broken. The tribal people in the region make meagre earnings and spending it on repairing damages is beyond their means.
“During the four day programme our focus was to provide as much aid as possible to cover the community’s immediate and basic needs; and to provision for food and sanitation utilities that can cover them for an extended duration of time,” says Manit Shah.
They also focused on providing aid to communities of lepers, orphans and differently abled women by donating clothes, dental and sanitary kits, school bags and stationary.
“The devastation caused by this calamity and the suffering it has brought to the people is distressing. While we cannot undo the loss, we wish to try and do our best to help mitigate the prevailing situation to gradually bring it back to normalcy.” concludes Latisha Shah.