Delhi/NCR experienced its coldest and longest winter in 15 years. December, January and February saw extreme drops in temperature, smog as well as regular showers and thunderstorms. The wintry, cold conditions made the days dreary, and the nights freezing. Some of us are fortunate enough to have homes that are equipped with everything we might need to keep ourselves warm- heaters, geezers, warm clothing and even food that gives warmth.
However, what happens to those who do not have homes, who do not even have one blanket to save themselves from the extreme cold? In January 2019 10 homeless people died because of the cold in just a week. The statistics are horrifying, to say the least.
To help the homeless face the challenges of winter Wishes and Blessings initiated a unique programme in the winter of 2014. Under this programme, each Friday a team of volunteers, staff and team members venture onto the streets of Delhi to provide winter relief to those who need it the most. The aim is to spread warmth, and this includes providing items like mufflers, gloves, socks, blankets, caps sweaters and even food that gives warmth. The beneficiaries remember team members from previous drives and look forward to meeting them each year.
This year, the team reached out to more than 40 shelters and more than 2500 homeless men, women, children and elderly. It was extremely heartening to see that the homeless could now sleep warmly and comfortably. Team members and volunteers loved meeting with people from various backgrounds and many struck interesting conversations with them. All came back with a new outlook on life, thankful for all the privileges they have and with a renewed sense of purpose to help the underprivileged.