Fighting COVID-19 Maharashtra
Nearly 90% of India’s workforce is employed in the informal sector and is severely impacted by the nation-wide lockdown. As India’s official case count increases exponentially, a weakened supply chain owing to logistical and distribution challenges has put the following vulnerable sections at risk in Maharashtra:
• Migrant labourers (largest in India as per Census 2011) who are stranded with little access to food or medical assistance
• Slum-dwellers who are prone to respiratory viruses due to high population density & lack of basic hygiene in slums
• Frontline medical professionals at hospitals that are experiencing a deficit of essential protective gear
Furthermore, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) is highly neglected as most private/NGO relief efforts are focused towards Mumbai. During our numerous distribution drives, our volunteers and distribution partners observed that slum-dwellers had not received basic food and essential supplies in days, and were not aware of fundamental safety protocols.
Our solution is based on bridging the gap between suppliers and beneficiaries in the Navi Mumbai area - using expedient solutions to prevent the rapid, uncontrolled spread of the virus. In the short span of two weeks, we have operated nimbly, built crucial partnerships to help reach essentials to the most underserved areas and raised ~INR 9 lakhs through crowdsourcing and CSR funding.
With the support of the State Disaster Management Authority and through our active collaboration with the Government of Maharashtra, we are sourcing the most updated data to identify at-risk communities and map their requirements. Our other collaborations include:
Invest India, Robin Hood Army and the Navi Mumbai police for support with on-the-ground movement and logistics
Zomato Feeding India for supply of food grains, Swiggy and National Restaurant Association of India for delivery of hot-cooked meals to relief camps and low-income communities
In putting the kit together, we have built relationships with suppliers of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) that we can quickly turnaround at low costs. We are in talks with the BMC to acquire testing cabins (called SAFEST cabins from a BMC approved manufacturer), similar to testing kiosks used in South Korea.
Our approach is focused on:
- Identifying the beneficiaries and suppliers of essential products and services
- Leveraging / forging strategic partnerships
- Nimble and quick delivery to beneficiaries
Impact Numbers so far:
- Distributed care packages (containing three face masks, two sanitizers, food grains and a guidance note on COVID-19) across ten slums and four relief camps
- Provided 7,300 masks to 1,100 medical workers and 1,400 slum dwellers
- Provided 26,000 meals to 2500 beneficiaries
- Provided 2,31,000 meals to 16,500 beneficiaries across Maharashtra- through 3,300 relief packages to daily wage earners and people with disabilities
- Provided 60,000 sanitary napkins along with guidance notes on hygiene and disposal practices to 6000 disadvantaged women and girls
- Conducted online art therapy sessions for children with special needs and learning disabilities to help overcome anxiety through art, in these unprecedented times