Magic Poshan is an initiative, started by Inika Kandwal, Tanya Gupta and Shruti Koundinya, to provide underprivileged schoolchildren with essential nutrition as they don’t have access to school mid-day meals during the lockdown in India.
Our story begins with one balcony, a cold night breeze, glistening stars, and 3 bowls of steaming Maggi. We were spending just another night of the community lockdown together, and we drifted into conversations about school, university and our lives. Naturally, we came around to talking about the pandemic and how it had taken away things we had looked forward to the most this year – whether it was starting university, going back to university, or just meeting the people we hadn’t seen in a long time. We sighed, ended this fruitless discussion, and joked “at least we get to enjoy our bowls of Maggi!”
That’s when it clicked: Do the 400 students of our neighbourhood government school also have access to steaming bowls of food? How are they including nutrition in their meals at home during the lockdown?
Turning Interest Into Action
As we started with just the three of us, a passion for food, and a will to provide, we ran a self-funded pilot with 40 children to assess what would work. We created a snack pack made of eco-friendly handmade newspaper bags that contained Soya chunks, We-Mana protein bar and fruits. Our personal cherry on top was the comic strips we made for the children that were easy to understand, bilingual and illustrated the use of each snack.
A week later we received news that the children wanted more. Magic Poshan was now alive and running! Immediately, we sent word out to our community for donations and were overwhelmed by the support – from not only Bangalore but also India and around the world! Because of these generous donations, we collected around 2 lakhs!
This support enabled us to magnify our reach to more children and for a longer period of time. We are now reaching out to over 800 children from the Ramagondanhalli government school, Immadihalli government school and Siddapura government school. Additionally, we supplied WeMana bars to over 120 daily wagers, orphans, and frontline workers in our community. Our donors and supporters have helped us reach to more than double of what we had initially planned. Furthermore, through the generous people at the Annapoorna Trust, we are able to provide a 2 month supply of Saisure, a malt-based protein powder to be had with milk to children.
Our journey doesn’t end here, however. These children have yet to endure upcoming months of lockdown and the realities of a post-COVID world. We believe that magic lies in all of us, and since you’ve taken the time to read this, you’ve already begun your magical journey with us and the 800 children. We are committed to stay determined and provide essential nutrition for as long as possible and need your support to help make our vision a reality. 200 Rupees is enough for one child for one month. But your support is not only limited to donations. We are looking for support on our Instagram, Youtube and LinkedIn pages, as every follower can enhance our reach by hundreds. Last but not the least, we are looking to partner with brands or products that would prove beneficial to children during the lockdown.
A little magic goes a long way. Help us spread the word.
Who we are
Inika Kandwal is a second-year undergraduate student at The Hong Kong University of Science and technology, pursuing Environmental Management.
Tanya Gupta is a first-year Economics and mathematics undergraduate student studying at The University of Toronto.
Shruti Kundaniya is a first-year Design student at the Strate School of Design.
Each one of us brings a set of unique skills and ideas to our team, along with our collective drive to spread some magic through happy and healthy smiles. We’re always pushing ourselves to reach out to more children and improve the quality of life for as many children as possible.
We’ve documented our journey, who we are, our work and sources on our website: https://magicposhan.wixsite.com/website