Mumbai: A Bangalore-based journalist, Sandhya Menon, has raised Rs 8.9 lakh in less than two days’ time. She got random strangers to trust her with their money and this is because Menon is keeping the whole process transparent, she revealed. “I have uploaded all the images of the bills and receipts of the items that I have purchased for flood-affected people of Kerala. The first group of trucks has already gone to Wayanad,” Menon added. She admits that she is not a social activist by profession but a person who felt the need to help people in distress.
Menon, who is involved with two organisations/group — one is Project Shine and the other one is Blue Umbrella — managed to mobilise the amount all alone. “I was able to mobilise Rs 8.9 lakh in less than two days’ time,” she shared. This single mother of two is proud that her daughter joined her and decided to contribute her savings. “I am planning to match her contribution and contribute to the relief,” said Menon, while talking about her 10-year-old daughter.Her understanding on how to manage relief items comes with her experience in Blue Umbrella— a group that was formed for Chennai floods. “We are not a non-governmental organisation (NGO) but a group that got together to help flood-affected people.”
She recalls her decision to help people affected with floods. “I studied in Chennai for seven years. I love that city and I had to do something for it.”Raising money for such activities is one thing and keeping the whole process transparent is another ball game altogether. “I acknowledged all the money that I have collected. I put all the bills and receipts of purchases online so that contributors know where their money is going.” All the items despatched were given to district administration and a stamp taken from the administration. She then put out all the receipts on her Twitter account. She added, “I make sure that the whole process is transparent.” This transparent approach has caught the attention of businesses, too. “Many businesses like Amazon, Big Basket and Uber have come forward to help.” She also does not forget to mention the vegetable vendors in Bangalore who came forward to support her activity.