>Anna Dhaanam

>Annam means food… Dhaanam means giving… Together meaning- Giving food as charity. At home, We believe that giving food is the best charity. Today, being Akshaya Tritiya, we always give food to people who are needy.

Akshaya Tritiya is a festival which is celebrated to bring good health and prosperity for everyone. But for the past decade, it has become a money making festival for all the corporate gold houses.. I don’t remember that when my grandmother was alive, it was celebrated this way. My grandmother like my mom now, used to give food to the beggars and needy…. She made sure that it was given to lots of people.. but at this time, Akshaya Tritiya was not celebrated by buying gold and staking it in your bank locker. Somewhere some astrologer must have said its good to get gold and every marketer must have caught up with this idea to attract the customer. Now you can see celebrities, commoners, fashion designer and most of all the gold merchants talking about buying gold, platinum, diamond, etc. This day has become a gold gamble day for everybody. I don’t live up to such kind of marketing. I, as a rule, make sure that we follow what my grandmother did when she was still there with us and so does everybody at home…. 

Anna dhaanam are given in all the temple all over India. Its not that only people who are needy should have it. Its given to all the people who are willing to eat at that place. My mom once took me to this temple in Kumbakonam and I did have anna dhaanam there and another temple in chennai. My sister was too embrassed to eat there with all the beggars beside us but I dint care after all they are humans too..  Just one single difference. It doesn’t matter.
My cousin brother has started this NGO about two years ago. They take up a village and help them educate and provide food almost daily. You can visit their website @ Good Hearts. They also have a yearly blood donation camp and other stuffs to help small scale enterprenuers to bring up their talents. These are just a gang of friends who started this organisation on behalf of their late friend Praveen whom I also happen to know because he was my school senoir. 
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