December 21, 2016
Kochi : During the floods in Chennai last year when most of us shrugged a shoulder and turned a blind eye to the sufferings in the neighbouring State, nine like-minded souls got together and arranged 24 trucks of relief to Chennai. They didn’t stop at that but took one step forward to ensure that the same situation doesn’t happen back home. The answer was Anbodu Kochi – a gathering of souls who vowed to make their city shine in all possible ways.
Their first project was Ente Kulam Ernakulam that aimed at cleaning the umpteen ponds in Kochi. “We became aware that clogging our water bodies and constructing buildings over them would be detrimental in the same way as Chennai,” says Bindu Satyajith, Chief Coordinator for Anbodu Kochi. The team’s hard work saw them revive 55 ponds, 15 cents to 10 acres in magnitude. It was just the first step.
As they celebrate their first anniversary this year with 20,000 volunteers, the path they have paved is inspirational for many. “There are at least 200 people who are ready to assist us any time of the day,” says Bindu. A non-governmental organisation formed with the wholehearted support of the then collector Rajamanickyam, Anbodu Kochi has a few other interesting projects – Muthe Ponne, Pa Pa and Sundari Kochi.
Under the Muthe Ponne project, volunteers conducted educational camps for slum children. The five-day power-packed session also sought the help of organisations like Bodhini to help rehabilitation of sexually abused children. The Pa Pa project took care of the needs of 14,000 poor students and also helped with admissions to professional colleges for free. Volunteers are involved in beautifying the city under the Sundari Kochi project. “Our next aim is to make the city child-friendly,” signs off Bindu, who feels there is nothing that you can’t achieve with team work.