Over 100 employees of this startup let go of salaries to donate food for the needy

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Employees of Repos Energy, a door-to-door diesel delivery startup have donated their salaries and working with government, NGOs to help the needy

In a crisis situation where the startups have laid off their employees or facing uncertainty, the employees of a Pune-based startup have come together to donate salaries to help citizens in distress.

Repos  Energy, a door-to-door diesel delivery startup founded by Chetan Walunj and Aditi Bhosale Walunj about three years ago, has started a campaign ‘Lend A Hand’ to help people in distress due to the Coronavirus outbreak. The employees of this startup have donated as much as their entire month’s salary for labourers and migrants.

“We have managed to collect Rs 7 lakh from the employees and the company has contributed another Rs two lakh for the cause. We have already supported over 900 families in Pune and Pimpri Chinchwad area by providing them with food provisions for the next 21 days,” said Chetan Walunj, co-founder of Repos Energy.

Chetan said they never expected such an overwhelming response from their employees, “Initially we just announced the campaign and told that on behalf of the employees, the company would be donating a certain amount of money. However, after an appeal to add more if the employees felt, donations started pouring in,” he adds.

Chetan said that such an act only shows how the employees are optimistic and want to support the nation in times of crisis. “The employees are already working in a risky environment by providing fuel to institutions like hospitals, government establishments, and residential areas. This is the true spirit of humanity that has come to light with the collective support,” he said.

Aditi, co-founder of the company said the management is equally sensitive towards their employees. “We have retained every single employee and are in fact hiring more. We have kept the morale of our team, high and every single member in the team is assured of his or her position in the organization,” she said.

Aditi said the entire team is well-bonded over video calling applications and keeping a check on routine work with daily meetings.

“Every employee realizes that he/she is a part of a mission and us, as an organization shall always stand by them regardless of what it takes. So, this has instilled a new confidence in the team and has allowed the team to focus on whatever that could be done in current situations and for future too,” Aditi says adding, “Every individual in the organization is an important team member for us and we can’t give up on them.”

So far the startup is working on the list of needy provided by the Labour Commissioner Office and Akansha Foundation to identify and help the needy. “We are glad that we could help the state government where they need us the most at this time of difficulty,” Aditi said.

“All the permissions from the police have been taken and about 10 volunteers are physically going to places suggested by the NGOs and government to support the needy,” she adds.                

A Reposian Nupur Sinha gave all her salary, the amount being Rs 50,000. She said “This is all I had. This was the most I could give at this moment and it might not be enough looking at the needs but I wanted to do my part. 

Another Reposian Sumit Deshmukh said, “We have enough to survive, we have this job to earn more. These people need our help now and us being possessive about money is not going to help, it can’t feed someone if locked in our bank accounts.” 

Reposian Rakesh Divedi who said “I could see so much energy in the founders and everyone around. It looked like, no one has enough but everyone is diving to help. So I thought of giving my share of the salary as I realized money can be earned but the life out there is important.”

Employee Kiran Dale said, “Government is surely taking care of all of us. But it becomes impossible for them to reach out to every family to feed and sustain them for 20-25 days. This is a great initiative by Repos as they are providing help to the neediest. Where better could I donate even?”

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