Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has been causing havoc across the globe. Besides the tragic toll on human life, with countries shutting their borders and quarantines, economies have taken a huge hit.
The tragedy has also begun to unfold in India since the first reported COVID-19 case (3 March 2020). India’s active COVID-19 case count have spiked to over 125,000 and the numbers are increasing alarmingly. The Government has been actively working towards stemming the outbreak.
A severe lockdown of nearly two months has been put in place in all the states. The number may increase by another two to three months depending on the situation.
A large segment of the unorganized sector nearly 60% of the Indian workforce are daily wage workers, gig-economy workers and petty businessmen do not have the necessary resources to survive. They rely on their daily wages to arrange food for their families.
The situation in West Bengal is grave. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India has identified 170 COVID-19 Hotspots across India. Of these, 123 districts have been classified as ‘hotspots with large outbreaks’ – the ‘red zones’.
Kolkata and Howrah are termed as “Red Zone” as they have more than 50 COVID-19 cases and multiple COVID-19 micro hotspots within the city. The lockdown, which was started on 24 March, has been extended to 30 June based on virus containment.
The current scenario shall encourage huge job losses and negatively affect their physical and mental health.
WE IN ACTION “FEED AND PROTECT 10K FAMILIES” CAMPAIGN
To respond to this humanitarian call, on 29 March, The We Foundation arranged Covid relief package and has started “Feed and Protect 10K Families” Campaign for the daily wage earners and low-income group living on the streets and slums of Kolkata, Howrah and rural areas of South 24 Parganas and North 24 Parganas Districts.
With the support of benevolent donors and in close coordination with Kolkata Police and Municipal Corporations, we have already reached3000 poor families (15000 Population, Family Size:5) with dry food staples, community kitchen for homeless and personal hygiene kits.
The We Foundation’s Rapid Response Team is working in arranging covid relief fund in India, to close coordination with Government and local police to ensure social distancing in the locations we provide relief kits.
TWF trained workers are complementing the efforts of Government by addressing the shortage of health workers and providing support for active case searches by organizing community-based rapid screening of families while we are distributing relief kit to the families.
Suspected COVID-19 cases are linked with Government health facilities with the help of Local Police and Block/Municipal Administration.
With your support, we shall cater to another 7000 families and even more until the cases abate and these families overcome the mental and physical shock to earn their livelihood again.
- City slums and streets in 7 wards of Kolkata Municipal Corporation, Kolkata, West Bengal
- Slums and streets in 5 wards of Howrah Municipal Corporation, Howrah, West Bengal
- Sandeshkhali-I, Sandeshkhali –II, Haroa and Hingalganj Blocks of North 24 Parganas district, West Bengal
- Kakdwip Block (2 GPs), Pathar Pratima Block (4 GPs), Mathurapur-I (2 GPs), Mathurapur-II (2 GPs), Joynagar-I (2 GPs).
Relief kits to children and families:
- Grocery Kit: Rice, Dal, Potato, Edible Oil, Soyabean, and Salt.
- Infant and children food: Health drink (canned milk) and Biscuits.
- Personal Hygiene Kit for women and children: Hand and Bath Soaps, Reusable Masks, Sanitizers, Detergent Bar and Sanitary Napkin.
- Education kit: Pen, Pencil, Sharpener, Note books and other supplies to continue education at homes
Support To Government Hospitals, Isolation Units, and ICDS Centres
As the active COVID-19 case count in India increases to more than 70,000, there is a high demand for PPE and other safety gear across Hospitals and Isolation Units.
Hospitals are, therefore, optimizing the use of PPE and other safety gear. The frontline health workers conducting house-to-house visit in micro hotspots need safety gear to protect themselves and people associated with them from the deadly disease.
Due to the spurt in cases, the doctors and hospital administration are finding it difficult to build the morale and confidence of nurses and other paramedical staff within such a limited time.
A fear factor and family & community pressure are further deteriorating the situation. As per media news, at least 350 nurses in Kolkata have quit their job and left for their hometown.
Doctors and counselors say that social stigma associated with COVID-19 is the cause. In support of our frontline COVID-19 Warriors, The We Foundation has been providing the following services as covid relief fund.
Standard PPE Kit and other safety gears such as N95 masks, Infrared Thermometers to Government and Charitable Hospitals to help fight the disease.
Given PPE kits to a Hospital in Howrah Municipal Corporation Facilitated interface between HMC and Lions Club of Rabindra Sarovar.
The club provided PPE Kits, Sanitizers, N95 masks, hand gloves to frontline health workers of Foot-operated Handwashing stations with soap dispensers at strategic locations.
Foot-operated Sanitizer Dispensers at strategic locations in hospitals and isolation units.
Life-saving Ventilators to Government Hospitals, Charitable Hospitals and other Covid-19 hospitals.
Masks and sanitizers to ICDS Centers through Department of Social Welfare, Government of West Bengal, local police stations Given 500 reusable masks to ICDS centers in Kolkata through department of Social Welfare, Government of West Bengal Given 100 masks to local police station.
Expected output within 6 months:
- Provided food security to children and families, personal hygiene, education and other relief kits to 10K Households.
- Curbed the spread of the infection in areas of operation by 70%.
- Generated mass awareness on COVID-19.
It is an appeal to donors, investors, and communities to come together to respond to this crisis.