Food for Life

In his famous 2005 commencement speech to Stanford University, Jobs said of his time at Reed: “It wasn’t all romantic. I didn’t have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends’ rooms, I returned coke bottles for the 5 cent deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the seven miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple.”

Steve Jobs

Founder of Apple

foodforlifesignThe International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) is doing its part to combat world hunger.  In the last three decades, ISKCON’s “Hare Krishna Food for Life” program has served more than 300 million hot, nutritious, vegetarian meals to the disadvantaged throughout America, Asia, Africa, Australia and Europe.

In 1974, seeing street children rummaging through garbage for something to eat, ISKCON founder A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada was moved to tears and instructed his followers that no one within a ten-mile radius of any Krishna temple should go hungry.  Today, the program includes free food restaurants, mobile kitchens, and emergency relief services, and distributes upwards of 400,000 free vegetarian meals per day to needy people in more than 60 countries.

“Too much grief and despair in the world is caused by hunger,” says Australian born Paul Turner, international coordinator of Food for Life. “Krishna devotees are dedicated to bring people hope by distributing healthy and sanctified foods.”

Free Prasadam distribution at the Manzanilla Kartik Festival
Free Prasadam distribution at the Manzanilla Kartik Festival

Recently, Food for Life chapters in New Delhi and Mumbai inaugurated successful “Mid-Day Meal” programs to combat hunger.  These programs aim to liberate underprivileged children from the vicious cycle of poverty; they seek to encourage school attendance by providing students with fresh, nutritious lunches, free of cost.  In Mumbai, the program partners with the state government and the Times of India media group, and feeds more than 30,000 students in over 100 schools every day.

In Trinidad and Tobago apart from meals served to guests at our temples several food distribution programs take place around the country:

  • JC Mc Donald Home for the Aged – 1992 – present
  • St. Vincent de Paul Home for the Aged: 1992 – 2011
  • Court Shamrock Homeless Shelter, San Fernando: 2008 – present
  • San Fernando Street Dwellers, Kings Wharf to San Fernando Market: 1992 – present
  • Mother Theresa Orphanage, Oropouche: 2009 – present
  • St. Dorcas Home for the Aged, Oropouche: 2010 – present
  • La Brea Home for the aged: Commenced 2012
  • Living Water Community, Coora Road Siparia: Commenced 2012
  • Distribution of 1000 free meals at the annual Kartik festival at Manzanilla Beach
  • Weekly distribution of at least 200 meals to homeless persons in Port-of-Spain or other major town in Trinidad
  • Weekly distribution of at least free 500 meals at our temples on a weekly basis
  • Distribution of at least 7500 free meals at our large public programs annually
  • Distribution of at least 3000 free meals publically at food distribution programs in various towns in Trinidad and Tobago annually

Trinidad and Tobago's Hare Krishnas