Now that it’s been two years since the pandemic wreaked havoc in India, financialexpress.com is looking at some such initiatives being taken in the country.
COVID Initiatives: It’s been over two years since the coronavirus pandemic knocked on India’s door, and 2020 was the last few days for the country to function somewhat normally. Since then, the world as we know it has changed. Amid new variants and new vaccines, people have been trying to understand what hand they’ve been dealt. During this time, however, many organizations and individuals have risen to take initiatives that help others do better against the pandemic that has been made worse by wear and tear. Now that it’s been two years since the pandemic wreaked havoc in India, financialexpress.com is looking at some such initiatives being taken in the country.
Akshaya Patra Stichting Foundation
The Akshaya Patra Foundation is known for its benevolent efforts since the year 2000. During the pandemic, the foundation has provided food aid to help vulnerable communities. As a result, since March 2020, the foundation has served more than 21.66 crore meals, including cooked meals and dry groceries, along with Happiness Kits for children and families and Shakti kits for pregnant women. This initiative is spread across four Union Territories and 19 states.
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The foundation has also conducted boosted vaccination campaigns to address the problem of vaccine hesitancy among people belonging to marginalized communities. Under this, it has provided each vaccinated person with a free lunch, refreshments and Raksha Kit, a ration pack of groceries for 21 meals. Under this initiative, more than 1 lakh people have been vaccinated in Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru and Hyderabad.
COVIDActionCollab, along with its partners, has taken two major initiatives – VaxNow and Call4Svasth – to help marginalized communities during the pandemic. VaxNow was a national vaccination campaign undertaken to help the government vaccinate 1 crore individuals while countering vaccine reluctance and building equitable distribution. It reached out to sex worker communities and ran numerous camps to vaccinate them. “The most vulnerable communities that need COVID-19 vaccines the most are not getting vaccinated and are falling through the cracks in current vaccination campaigns. Delay in vaccinating the vulnerable would allow the COVID-19 virus to evolve, cause new outbreaks and cause loss of livelihood and thus poverty. They are also prone to serious illness and are the least likely to afford life-saving medical interventions. Without accelerated vaccination, the pandemic will not be defeated and the vaccination process can continue for years to come,” said Shiv Kumar, co-founder of COVIDActionCollab.
The Call4Swasth initiative is a response to the hardships faced by vulnerable groups (such as the elderly, women, children, migrant workers, sex workers and members of the LGBTQIA+ community) in accessing healthcare during the pandemic. As a result of this gap in access to healthcare, the Swasti group, in partnership with COVIDActionCollab, has created an integrated digital platform known as Call4Swasth to fill the digital gap in these communities. “Call4Svasth is a community-led integrated teletriage and community care service to address physical, emotional and social determinants of health, with facilities for COVID-19 care. This includes services such as COVID-19 awareness, risk assessment, counseling services, vaccination onboarding and registration support, facilitation of government social security schemes along with the provision of care materials for safe home quarantine, home COVID care management and testing services to holistically address the needs of vulnerable communities. Community health workers connect community members to the helpline where a nurse who calls, depending on whether there is a need for emotional support, primary care, or essential services, puts them through to a counselor, nurse or social protection service provider,” Kumar said.
Some Good Samaritans
According to the social media platform for changemakers, UPDEED, Prabhat Saxena performed during the intense second wave of COVID-19 in April 2021. While many patients, hospitals and even states were dealing with oxygen deprivation, he worked with his team at Srijan Ek Soch and arranged several oxygen concentrators from Doha in Qatar. He then had these concentrators installed in some government hospitals in Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand.
UPDEED also highlighted the work of Mahantesh Vakkund, who along with his team saved 1,200 lives in the second wave of COVID-19 by installing oxygen cylinders and concentrators. He and his team also provided civilian hospital residents with two meals a day, without fail for 46 days.
This post COVID Lockdown Anniversary: 2 years on, a look back at exemplary work by organizations, heroes without capes was original published at “https://www.financialexpress.com/lifestyle/health/covid-lockdown-anniversary-2-years-on-a-look-back-at-exemplary-work-of-organisations-heroes-without-capes/2467091/”