‘Pencil man’. Venkat Krishnamoorthy claims he has helped donate 25,051 kg of stationery to underprivileged children since 2009. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai A Dubai-based Indian is aiming to collect 5,000kg of stationery items over the weekend to donate to needy children under a charitable initiative called ‘Joyful Giving’.

Venkat Krishnamoorthy, a chartered accountant who runs a software company, said the items will be collected at Al Diyafah High School between 6 and 9pm on October 13 and 7am and 1pm on October 14.

Refugee camps

“People can donate everything from paper, notebooks, drawing books and calculators to pens, pencils, colour pencils, crayons, sharpeners, erasers, rulers, glue, scissors and school bags,” he said.

Krishnamoorthy said the items would be handed over to Emirates Crescent for further distribution to children in refugee camps.

He said a number of corporates and schools had pledged their support for the cause, and cartons with the stationery they had already put together would be brought to the Al Diyafah School on October 13.

Popularly known as the ‘Pencil Man’, Krishnamoorthy began his unlikely initiative back in 2009 when he told himself he would give back to society. “I turned 50 in June 2009 and resolved to spend one hour of my daily time for a good cause. Since education was my cup of tea, I wanted to do something related to this area.”

The father of two said, “As luck would have it, a friend who ran a charitable school in India happened to visit Dubai with seven children from the school. They were on their way back from Scotland where they participated in an art exhibition. They were staying with me. When the kids saw a drawer full of used pencils, crayons and colour pencils at my place, they said it was a luxury for them. That pretty much helped me zero in on what I should do.”

Overwhelming response

Krishnamoorthy said he immediately contacted his friends in Dubai and floated the idea of donating used pencils for the underprivileged kids in India. The response was overwhelming and he was able to send 1,000 pencils to them within a week. Ever since, his platform education4all has collected and distributed 25,051kg of stationery items in partnership with Engage Dubai under the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry.