July 13, 2020

Minu Pauline and a gesture that is touching many hearts

Minu is an entrepreneur, a mom and someone who is receiving huge accolades for the gesture undertaken outside her restaurant ‘Pappadavada’. In a telecon, Minu Pauline from Ernakulam, Kerala shares of having started a refrigerator that has begun stocking leftover fresh food for public consumption. This is a varied story of an entrepreneur mum who surely has the heart of gold and now others in the city are joining her in spreading happiness.

“I was in a secure banking job but I always had this urge to start something on my own and even though my parents encouraged me a lot they were worried of me moving into any entrepreneurship venture. After marriage I started a tiny outlet like an eatery in a busy and popular space in Ernakulum.

After three years and having gained enough experience I began with a new outlet with complete support of my husband. All along as a restaurant owner I would see how much of food we wasted. Many times I would pack it and take it home or send it across to friend’s homes but they were too concerned over eating the similar food or getting back home excess food.

I would wonder that I had in my restaurant fresh food but I couldn’t sell it the next day at my eatery. Until when one late evening after a long day at the restaurant and lot of pending work, I was returning home midnight and saw a poor lady searching for food that I had sometime back dumped in the garbage bin. It was almost like a slap on my face and I decided I had to do something to work this out.

We put up a refrigerator outside our eatery and said anyone could leave leftover but fresh food in our refrigerator. It has become a chain now where people do leave and even as a committed individual at our restaurant we pack 50 packs of food and leave it in the refrigerator everyday. This is so that even if no one else has left we can still offer those who need. We have received a huge response for this gesture.

Interestingly once outside my eatery a premium car stopped and I saw someone getting down and leaving a brown pack in the refrigerator. I was curious what food they had left. Something made me want to check it and I saw it was good hot packed food from an up market hotel. Probably they had a party and left the leftover here. In a few minutes a poor lady came and took the pack I knew that lady could have never tasted or had the food ever in her life on her own from that premium hotel.

Now I feel, we are spreading happiness and we are just the medium. There are others who are embracing this initiative as their own.

It is so important to give back to the society when we can do it with simple gestures. I am a mom too and I am able to manage my entrepreneurial interest with the complete support of my husband who also pitched in to bring this idea of the public refrigerator and my mom. She is a teacher and even now manages her profession and takes care of my son too when I am at work. My mom has been a role model for me as she has fought several obstacles to pursue her dreams. Nothing stopped her to be and choose what she wanted and all along my dad supported her in the journey. I wish to be able to pursue all my dreams as well.”

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