RISE4India – As the vulnerable in the aftermath of second wave of COVID-19 engulfs the country like a never-before-seen pandemic, aftermath efforts from all directions are pouring in to maintain support during this trying time. Not only have the nation’s corporations, philanthropists, and non-governmental organizations been proactive in assisting the victims, but international solidarity is growing daily. Because this is not a problem unique to India and can have far-reaching consequences for the entire planet if left unchecked. As reported, the total death toll stands at 2,83,000, with an average of 3,07,000 new cases added daily. (Data from the JHU CSSE Covid-19, dated May 19, 2021)
What has increased the aftermath danger of the second wave is the mutation and sheer magnitude with which it has struck us this time. It’s unsurprising that we weren’t prepared for this, both mentally and in terms of infrastructure to assist in treating the patients. There is still hope in the midst of this pandemic; organizations on both the national and international level are doing everything possible to bolster the existing system by providing critical supplies and assisting those in need with appropriate food and medicine supplies.
Maha PECONET is one of these networks(RISE4India), convened by UNICEF Maharashtra and comprised of 65+ organizations, with 300+ on-ground volunteers and teams working tirelessly since April 2020 to assist the most vulnerable, ensuring that no one goes unattended during this time of crisis. In 2020 alone, the efforts will benefit over 10,00,000 people across India.
The team is collaborating closely with the Public Health Department to address District Hospitals and other medical needs throughout Maharashtra’s urban and rural areas, small towns, villages, and remote tribal areas.
Since March 2021, they have assisted over 171,000 people through a variety of programmes, including vaccination awareness campaigns in 11 districts and towns throughout Maharashtra, as well as medical and non-medical supplies to those in need in difficult-to-reach areas. COVID patients, affected families, vulnerable groups—women and children, transgender and sex workers—are among their beneficiaries.
This year, in collaboration with the RISE Infinity Foundation(RISE4India) and United Way Mumbai, Maha PECOnet has concentrated its relief efforts on providing life-saving medical supplies such as oxygen concentrators and ventilators to assist our public health infrastructure, which is currently overwhelmed and struggling to cope with the surge in cases.
To compensate for marginalized communities’ income loss, they propose to assist families of daily wage earners, small business owners, and self-employed individuals, particularly women, by providing ration and hygiene essentials kits. The contents of the kit will comfortably sustain a family of 4-5 people for one month.
The funds required for medical supplies and ration kits are estimated to be INR 22.5 crore and INR 1.5 crore, respectively. Until now, Maha PECOnet partners have ordered 1376 oxygen concentrators, 500 of which have been delivered to Maharashtra’s government hospitals. 350 units are currently en route to Government Hospitals in Maharashtra, and another 526 units are on order for delivery between the third and fourth weeks of May.
While efforts are being made by teams on the ground, combating the overwhelmed system and filling in the gaps presents a significant challenge. This requires a greater level of support from everyone to ensure that each life is assisted and saved in every way possible.