Hit by coronavirus pandemic which has almost dried up the CSR fund, NGOs especially working with
disabled children and adults are fighting a different battle.
Festival of light which is round the corner is no different. For most of them, Diwali has been a muted affair this time as there are few buyers for the handicraft decors made by their students for the festivities.
“Every year, various products such as hand-painted diyas, gift boxes, envelops, diaries, glass gel
candles, terracotta diyas, scented tea light candles, and other Diwali decors made by our students
with disabilities were exhibited at various corporate and exhibitions and sold like hot cakes. By
selling these handicraft items our school generated some revenue to pay them as well as spend on
their education and vocational classes. "But, due to the ongoing outbreak, there are no buyers to purchase our handicraft items," said Mridul Singh from Delhi-based Ek Koshish Special School for children and adults with disabilities.
The school has put up a sale counter at Shop No 1, 211 Karkardooma in the national capital which
was inaugurated by area Counselor Gunjan Gupta.
“The aim of having a sale counter in such a place is to motivate local people of the area to purchase the hand-crafted products and contribute for the society. We have ensured all mandated safety precautions against Covid-19.”
Bringing some light to these murkier times, however, are good Samaritan and kind-hearted donors
visiting from far areas as well as from the neighbourhood.
For example, in Gurmeet Khanna, an ex- banker and Kanchan Mittal, CEO of Haritika Diamonds and
Jewellery, the school has regular buyers for its products. Says Khanna, “these are tough times for
everybody. But we can help bring positivity by purchasing the products made by the adults and kids
Unlike Koshish which has showcased its products on a smaller scale, NGOs like Blind Relief
Association has decided not to hold their regular Diwali Mela. On the other hand, the Dastkar
'Festival of Lights' and the Delhi Tourism Diwali Mela has kickstarted from November 1-10 (Kisan Haat, Andheria Modh) and November 4-14 (Dilli Haat Pitampura), respectively, following all
government mandated safety precautions.
By Murtuza Merchant