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Tag: Pandemic


Aroehan’s Relief Work during the CoViD -19 Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has taken the world by storm but has at least helped the countries and states to revisit their health systems and health care delivery.

The 21-day lockdown which has been extended till the 31st of August recently, announced by the Prime Minister on the 23rd of March had multiple effects on the community at large. It .has affected the most vulnerable of the tribal group – the Katkaris, some widows who are staying alone in far to reach hamlets and the seasonal migrants and their families from other blocks and districts in the State. The worst hit, of course, are the migrants and small scale industrial labour who leave their home town and enter other cities/villages in search of menial jobs. As the companies and brick kilns were shut down and their owners stranded in the cities, the migrant population had been left in the lurch with nowhere to go, no money and lack of basic necessities like food and water.

AROEHAN as a team has always strived to help the most vulnerable tribals in the various blocks of its implementation. The team was able to identify many such individuals and families in the villages and hamlets of Palghar and Mokhada Block in Palghar district through reliable sources and we decided to help them with dry ration and hygiene essentials.

There had also been requests for hygiene/ protective consumables (mask, sanitizer, gloves) from the PHCs as well as the front-line workers of Palghar, Jawhar and Mokhada block.

Summary of the relief work undertaken:

We could provide dry ration kits and hygiene essentials to 3042 migrant BPL families in Palghar, Dahanu and Mokhada blocks of Palghar district with the funds received from various individual donors as well as Corporate.

We have also been able to provide surgical masks and hygiene kits to health personnel, ASHA workers, Anganwadi workers and police administration in Jawhar and Mokhada blocks with support from our corporate donors. They were provided with 3552 bottles of hand sanitisers, 3520 cloth masks, 3200 surgical masks and 4850 pairs of hand gloves. 22 Pulse Oximeters have been provided to the Medical Officers and ASHAs at Mokhada and Palghar resp.

Each family was given a ration kit consisting of the following items:
• 5 kg of Rice
• 2 kg of Dal
• 1 litre oil
• ½ kg spices and salt
• ½ kg sugar and tea
• Soap bars

The Sarpanch and the local volunteers along with some villagers helped identify the settlements of the migrant families. The dry ration was picked up from the grocery stores who were permitted to remain open for supplies at the Taluka place.

A tempo was hired for transport and our staff also used their own vehicles to transport the goods to the respective villages.

All the precautionary methods like hygiene, social distancing were maintained and a list of beneficiaries made for our records.

A considerable population is still left out in small pockets in various hamlets in and around Palghar, Mokhada and Dahanu block. We are still carrying out the good work of providing dry ration in these areas. Along with this messages on hygiene, hand wash, social distancing and respiratory etiquette are also conveyed by our field workers to the group.


Aroehan Helps Migrant Workers

The announcement of PM Modi on March 24 created unprecedented problems for migrant workers. Many of them started walking to reach their home town, in some cases a few hundred kilometres away. They went without food and water.

Aroehan’s Project staff realised that they had to track down such workers and provide help. They found out migrant workers working on brick kilns were stranded at certain villages in Palghar. The Project staff sent an SOS.

“We have identified migrants on Brick kiln in Palghar Block who are in need of basic things in this lockdown villages: Dhuktan – Katkaripada, Diwekarpada and Ranoli (90), Sakhre (38), Haloli-Padospada (18). We must provide them with Grocery and other basic items.” Providing food and other essentials meant substantial cost, a quick estimate informed us that it will cost a little more than Rs. One Lakh for this group.

Dr Shubalakshmi, COO of Aroehan sought help. Aroehan had not planned for this eventuality. But the situation was such that it was not possible to ignore. How can any NGO worth its salt turn Nelson’s eye when a group of people are in a helpless situation?

An appeal was made through a post on Facebook. And also mails were sent to well-wishers requesting donations. The response was much more than what we wished for. In about fifteen hours we collected a little less than Rs. Two Lakhs!

The project team moved with speed. They immediately met 19 families (say about 70+ persons) at Dhuktan and provided each family with a package containing Rice 5 Kg, Tea 500 gm, Sugar 1 Kg, Tur Dal 500 gm, Masala + Turmeric, Edible Oil 1 Litre, Toothpaste and a Soap.

Immediate Help Was Possible Because of Instant Response of Donors

This is the story of Aroehan’s help reaching within 24 hours of identifying the problem. And of responsible citizens who have contributed immediately. Aroehan’s project team will cover the rest of the needy workers tomorrow.

Kudos to the donors who responded within 15 hours. They made money available to Aroehan. Kudos to the Aroehan Team which has shown exceptional speed of response to help the needy.

The story will repeat and continue tomorrow. And our belief in the people’s willingness to support the vulnerable section of society is strengthened.

Vivek S Patwardhan