The Friends Forum is organising the sixth edition of the annual Friends Fest, a charity fundraising event on Wednesday, November 6 at Jama'ath Auditorum, Edapally, Kochi from 7am to 8pm. The programme will be inaugurated by entrepreneur, environmentalist and humanitarian Roopa George. The forum will host over 100 stalls including a variety of organic vegetables and fruits that are being sourced directly from organic farms. The event will also include a number of stalls from Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute, Vegetable and Fruit Promotion Council Keralam and the Coir Board.
The organisation that grouped together in 2012 was set up by a group of women who had the single plan of giving back to society. They work with three public schools in the city in partnership with the teachers and provide scholarships and free tuition to students who are recommended by the teachers themselves. The programme began seven years ago when the members of the group pooled their money together to support Rani (name changed), a young girl who dreamt of pursuing her MBBS. Currently, the girl is pursuing her house surgency at Al Afsar College, Thodupuzha.
Programme Coordinator of Friends Forum, Fathima Jaleel says, "Many of us are lucky enough to have the precious gift of free time. We thought that this was the ideal gift we could use in order to give back to a society that has always served us well. And we are trying to use the resources that we are lucky enough to have to give back to those who may not be as fortunate." Today, the programme supports 16 children and provides free tuition for over 9 children. The Friends Fest is being organised with the hope to raise enough support and money to help more underprivileged children follow their dreams.