If you can’t keep your surroundings clean, you don’t love yourself.

SHARE TO CARE

Eyes protruding
like the bones in the body
perpetually dwindling vision
yet the taste buds on an urge
to taste the essence of food
that quench their hunger.

Thousands of kids are left hungry in the developed countries. Even when there is plenty of production of food happening everywhere, the needy still be the needy of the same. According to recent surveys, the study focus on wastage of food that is occurring everywhere, which is about 30 % of food produced for the consumption which again equates to 1.3 billion tonnes of food per annum. Economically this food wastage causes $940billion a year as quoted by the Foodcloud.

Even though food waste is apparently happening everywhere, the amount of food wastage in developing countries are on the high end. When one end of the city is troubling with hunger and malnutrition, the other end is celebrating the feasts and once the housed levels are filled, the rest of the food is just thrown away.

The food wastage is most commonly seen during the festive season when unusual food wastage happens at an uncontrollable rate. I personally have seen numerous instances, wherein we tend to buy food more than we ever need and it goes wasted.
Food is one thing, that is refused once you are filled, unlike money.

In recent years, overseeing the amount of food wasted in parties and get-togethers, we all family members decided to give away the food, to the needy. We ensured that we never gave away the leftovers.

Food redistribution, which is veering the surplus amount of food that we bring in during celebrations are given to charitable institutions, which is one way to ensure that no one stays hungry and the food is reached in the right stomach.

Many organizations are on the urge to bring up a food reviving system, to ensure that poverty doesn’t cause malnutrition, by sufficient supply of food.

Giving the needy is the soundest charity

India is rich in customs and traditions, we all follow a lot many traditions to upkeep our culture. Most of the occasions like poojas, most of the families, unlike a few who are still remaining orthodox, prefer to feed the needy than call up the neighbouring kids who are well off.

Now society is gearing up a little bit to eradicate malnutrition, with redistribution of food. Let us all pledge not to waste food and channelize the surplus to the needy.

To conclude :
You can only have more for yours when you ought to share a piece of it“.

BE FOOD WISE

A couple of months back, I stumbled upon an old dusty book – ‘Food is Your Best Medicine’ by Dr. Henry G. Bieler. Curious about its content, I got it issued from the library and started reading it. Each page spelled wisdom! Dr. Bieler was a physician who shot to fame in 1965 with this book. On discovering the wonders of a good diet, he stopped prescribing medicines to his patients and switched to diet therapy. His colleagues, at that time, thought that he had lost his mind. But, as he describes case after case which responded to his way of treatment with food, one finds much sense in it. Bieler’s thesis was simple: you are what you eat, and opting for whole natural foods – as opposed to fast and convenience foods and sugary desserts – is crucial to optimum health.

The wisdom imparted by Dr. Bieler in his book is unchallengeable! But as I reflected and introspected, I realised that it is definitely not easy to give up our daily food habits for a stricter dietary regimen though the benefits are manifold to reap. It would sure take a super strong determination to follow the healthy diet pattern.

As it is said – some eat to live while some live to eat! Both groups co-exist in harmony unless of course either group moves towards the extremes.

The world scenario has greatly changed. From agricultural food products to processed, packaged and genetically modified (GM) food products, is quite a transition. Street food tickles the tongue more than hygienic home-cooked food. A bag of wafers and a bowl of popcorns make the day for teens and adults alike. Gelatos, faludas, sundaes and the like – rule the day. We call it advancement. Yes, they indeed are aftereffects of the various food and innovation revolutions that constantly hit the world.

To suggest to let go of all fun foods would be an extreme prescription that would remain limited to the extent of this article. The key word however is ‘moderation’. Afterall health and happiness are close cousins! To help them remain closely bonded, moderation is of utmost requirement. Eat what suits your biology, enjoy eating, but keep a check on how much you are eating.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations observes World Food Day on 16th October every year. This year’s theme was – Change the future of Migration. Invest in food security and rural development. The world today is more volatile than it was ever before. Each year the newspapers are flooded with news about refugee crises and migration issues. The developed nations have begun to feel burdened by the influx of migrants. In such a scenario, emphasis on food security and rural development is a must.

In cities, people don’t generally feel the hunger pangs as the rural people do. Even after massive developments and food revolutions, people especially in Asian and African countries die of starvation and malnutrition. What then is our duty as aware citizens? Should the policy framing and implementation be left to the sole prerogative of the governments?

Tiny steps make way for mega changes. Even as we guard our own dietary patterns, let’s also focus on the those hungry and starved people around us. Not all of them can be seen begging for alms. So, the challenge is to identify them and cater to them.

Another crucial value that needs to be inculcated is to avoid wastage of food. Here we waste food and there someone dies without a morsel! Not that avoiding food wastage would instantly reduce hunger deaths. But, it would awaken our conscience and make us grateful for every bite we take.

So, eat healthy, eat in moderation, eat happily without grumbling and share what you eat to show your love and care for those who have not many to care for them.

A CALL TO OPEN OUR EYES

We finished one more very interesting week discussing about the shortage of food, water and energy etc. and how we waste them in different ways knowingly and unknowingly. When I sat down to write final note I thought of doing a little research on the shortage and wastage in regards to all the aspects before concluding this week. I found some amazing websites which are dedicated to all these issues.

Let’s check them one after the other…

The very first site I stumbled upon is ‘World Hunger Education Service‘.

I loved their mission statement which goes like this:

  • educate the general public and target groups about the extent and causes of hunger and malnutrition in the United States and the world
  • advance comprehension which integrates ethical, religious, social, economic, political, and scientific perspectives on the world food problem
  • facilitate communication and networking among those who are working for solutions
  • promote individual and collective commitments to sustainable hunger solutions.

You can actually get all the updates by LIKEing their FB Page HERE.

Something drew my attention which I want to mention here. They describe the causes of world hunger as follows:

1. Poverty is the principal cause of hunger.

2. Harmful economic systems.

3. Wars & Conflicts.

4. Population Growth.

5. Food and agricultural policy.

6. Climate change.

Apart from the last cause, “Climate change” all are in our hands. We can control and manage poverty, economic systems, conflicts, agricultural policies and population growth. Some countries have succeeded in some areas. It is our turn now.

Next website which caught my attention was, ‘Water‘. I liked their caption:

Water has the power

To break the cycle of poverty.

To protect and save lives.

To make a bright future possible for all.

They have impacted worldwide. They work in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean.

I loved their approach. Why? Because –

  • They use microfinancing to bring small, affordable, easily repayable loans to those who need access to affordable financing and expert resources to make household water and toilet solutions a reality.
  • By bringing local, world leaders and everyday individuals together to make strides on the ground that turn into lasting transformation.
  • Exploring every angle on the water crisis and building, testing, and iterating on approaches that make the most of the resources they have while giving back the most to the people they serve.
  • They get local, they educate and they measure strategically.

I think whoever wants to DONATE them can do so to help them do what they are doing.

There are few interesting websites which drew my attention and I have listed them out as under for all of you to read and learn the strategies to save food, water, energy and human resources.  

  1. Save Energy
  2. Energy
  3. Switch On
  4. Acumen

Loved the last one in the list: Acumen. They literally do everything and providing service to products. Do not just omit it but go through what they are doing. I was so so impressed. 

You might ask why I am highlighting other companies, organisations and websites on Candles Online. We don’t promote others also… then why am I doing it???

I just wanted all of us to know and get aware of what is the condition of our world… what people are doing around us What can we do now 

The scripture says, 

So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.

God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”

Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move along the ground—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food.” And it was so.

God created us and given us authority over all. He wanted us to rule over everything and take care of everything as well. The word ‘Subdue‘ means owning, taking control over. We love to own things but never like to take care of the same. It’s not about you but about me also. So many times I also don’t take care of the things I own. 

Now is the time we need to respond to the call, a call to open our eyes and see clearly the things happening around us.

Keep thinking and keep giving feedback, 

Stay Blessed!!!

CONVENIENCE OR WASTAGE ?

Tissue paper: This is invented for CONVENIENCE . I too find it very convenient to use. But, do you know that to create tissue paper for a family of four, for a year, it would take two fully grown up trees ? Now, can you imagine how many trees are cut off every year ? The time to make a tree grow completely is much more than one year, so we are losing a vast area of green land for tissue paper. Now, the tissue starts to sound like an issue.

In the last 10 years, I sparsely used tissue paper to dry off my hands after lunch or dinner. I would let it dry naturally. I keep a watch on how much tissue is being used at home and I switch over to cloth when the limit reaches. A lot of tissues reach dustbin even when they aren’t used.

  • Try using a sponge or cloth to clean non-viscous liquids
  • Use a towel to dry off your hands instead of tissues
  • When at food joints, take only those many issues that you may need.

Refrigerator: A few years ago, there was no refrigerator. People used to buy fresh produce and eat them. We wanted to preserve food so that there is no WASTAGE, so we invented the refrigerator. We wanted de-freezing capability. So, we added that feature. With the addition of that feature, instead of switching off the refrigerator for some time for melting the formations of ice, we have to press a button, more usage of electricity but it’s CONVENIENT.

I can understand this feature for hill stations or during winter, but in reality, there is no real need of using this during summers or in areas where the temperatures are normal. Don’t you agree ? If you are thinking that there can be food items in your refrigerator that may get spoilt in an hour or two while you switch it off, it’s better to throw them off than to consume. They are not going to do any good for our health.

  • Use the additional features on electrical and electronic appliances on the need basis. That saves a lot of energy that otherwise could be saved and put to a better use.

I have added my two cents. If we carefully think over, we would find numerous ways of saving natural resources.

Shortage arises from wastage many times. Mother nature has given us abundant resources to have a comfortable living. We need to keep in mind that future generations are dependent on us, the less we waste, the less would be shortage we create. 

“The future belongs to those who understand that doing more with less is compassionate, prosperous, and enduring, and thus more intelligent, even competitive.”

Paul Hawken

LET’S TWEAK OUR CUSTOM A BIT

If you belong to the upper middle class I think you are acquainted more with wastage than the shortage.

This is Diwali week, people can hear cracker explosions all around them. And all our activist friends talking about the amount of air pollution and noise pollution people are creating. That part is worrisome right but I sometimes marvel at the amount of money which is wasted on these crackers. I mean it’s literally putting a matchstick to thousands of rupees. Probably, to show our neighbors how much better off we are as compared to them.

During Navratri on Ashtami or Navmi, there is a custom of calling 7 or more girls and offering them food and goodies. The girls in my colony are really in demand then and they go to on average 5-6 houses and get Halwa, ChHole Puri from all. At times so much is collected in their house that they don’t know what to do about it. After all how much can a small girl eat ? Why don’t we tweak our custom a bit and give it to the girl begging on the street. They will appreciate it more. They need it more.

A friend of mine told me that whenever they have dinner in a restaurant they get the leftovers packed and at times order additional chapatis to go with it and give it to the first beggar they meet at the signal so the family outings end on a very warm note.

Remember, there is a demand somewhere for whatever we have in surplus. It’s just a matter of getting it to the right person. If we all make an effort we can make a difference.

Kuljeet Saini is a science graduate. She was a computer science teacher for more than 6 years but now she is a complete homemaker with two very beautiful energetic boys to look after.

WHOSE MONEY IS THIS?

Hi Everyone,

A political leader from a particular political party honoured with a garland of currency notes worth millions of rupees (Indian currency), crores spent on erecting statues of leaders, money collected from people for birthday celebrations of political leaders,  agitation orchestrated by political parties witnessing huge loss of both public and private properties…….

My question is whose money is it that is being gutted?  It’s mine, it’s yours.  Then why it is at the mercy of some XYZ political leader whom we have chosen as a citizen of a democratic country. The word “democratic” takes me into retrospect where in history subjects of a state had to oblige by the decisions of a king as a thumb rule and they had no choice.  So how a king would turn out is a matter of fate of the subjects.   But now we should be thankful that we are in the era of democracy where we have a right to choose our leader.  Isn’t it?  Are we doing it diligently?

To begin with the entire process of election that is the face of democracy is a very costly affair.  Billions of rupees are allocated for this process for every party.  Source – taxes we pay.  And after all the high voltage drama of elections are over we suddenly get a scrolling on the news channel announcing the next date for mid-term elections.  Again the national interest takes a back seat and national politics drives the “money wastage” drive.  And our concerns (read tensions) regarding policy changes be it home loan or pension is a bonus.

Question is why it happens.  Let’s take a look:
  • Just like every adult (18+) can vote any citizen of India can contest for the elections.  The problem is “any” is never scrutinized in detail which means a person with a tainted background could contest the elections which spells collateral  damage for the country in future.  That could be in the form of scams, haywire law and order, recurring elections.  In any case it is our money that is squandered away.
  • Responsible citizens shrugging away from their responsibilities:  Elections day is not just a holiday but its a day to carry out our most important duty.  Remember that silence of a learned man is more dangerous than the banter of a foolish. Vote bank politics is a result of our negligence towards our responsibility and eventually its only we who suffer.

Now that we have an idea on how and what causes wastage of national resource –  money, this is least that we can do in the interest of the nation:

  • Passing the buck won’t help anymore.  First of all respect and exercise right to vote diligently, this right is our duty.  Elect deserving candidates.
  • Give attention to indirect taxes along with direct taxes. I know what I am talking about is going to burn a hole in your pocket but our negligence to pay likes of sales tax gives rise to black money and parallel economy that in turn induces government to squeeze out more from your account in the form of direct taxes.  And that’s a double trouble.

Think about it.