INDIA HAS BECOME AN EPICENTRE OF COVID-19 - AND WE NEED YOU.
The women, men and children of India are today facing a fight like none other.
Families in poverty – already living a hand-to-mouth existence – are at risk of not just sickness, but starvation and homelessness as they struggle to survive in a new ‘COVID’ world without a means of earning an income to buy food or pay rent – let alone keep themselves safe from infection.
Far more than a health pandemic, this is in fact a humanitarian crisis.
Daily, this pandemic has reminded us just how like each other we are – whether home is a suburban neighbourhood in Australia or a dusty village in India. When we see our brothers and sisters across the world grappling with lockdowns or walking streets in face masks, we’re reminded that we are far more alike than we are different.
AND RIGHT NOW, OUR FELLOW HUMANS NEED US MORE THAN EVER.
The situation in India is desperate. It’s nothing like it is here. We’re not facing COVID-19 in an overcrowded slum or isolated and alone, hundreds of kilometres from the nearest hospital. These families – mothers, fathers and children – often have less than a dollar or two a day to pay for food, rent and medical care. They don’t have access to soap and clean water and masks – and they may never, unless we reach them. And we need to reach them before COVID does.
Mark Daniels, Asia Programs Director, Opportunity International Australia.
If our renewed sense of our own humanity has taught us anything, it is that these are real people facing terrifying threats. We must do what we can to help.
Please, this Christmas, can you help families in desperate need survive COVID-19?
What we're doing
With your support, we can continue to reach families in poverty with crucial interventions, helping them survive this pandemic and rebuild into the future.
Running mobile clinics offering health check-ups and virus screening.
Our local program partners are distributing food, drinking water, soap, sanitiser, gloves and face masks.
Conducting crucial health education classes and awareness campaigns.
Loan moratoriums have been offered to ease financial burden for families as well as ‘restart loans’ of around A$200 for those wanting to kickstart businesses.
Vandu lives with her husband, children and in-laws in Maharashtra, India. Crammed into a tiny home, the family’s monthly income prior to the pandemic was just Rs.8,000 (A$152). That’s just 70 cents per person, per day.
To buy groceries or pay for medicine when they’re sick, they have to beg and borrow from relatives. Each day they walk 20 minutes just to fetch water from a well.
Maharashtra is now a COVID-19 hotspot, with a fifth of India's caseload – responsible for nearly 40% of deaths. For families like Vandu’s, the prospect of facing COVID-19 in the grip of poverty is terrifying.
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