INDIA: Volunteers aid hospitals in fight against COVID-19
Indian Catholic Youth Movement provides volunteers to help support local hospitals
(MissionNewswire) Salesian Father Anil D’sa, director of the Indian Catholic Youth Movement, in collaboration with the Sneha Charitable Trust, brought together a group of 50 young volunteers to help support Bangalore hospitals in India. The group has been called the “COVID Warriors” and is made up of young volunteers, including nuns and other religious personnel, who have been trained by experienced doctors to assist in various sectors of the hospitals.
Volunteers serve food and medicine to COVID-19 patients in general wards and in intensive care. They assist in the work of already overburdened nurses, and these volunteers have also now become important front-line workers in the fight against COVID-19 in India.
India is facing a devastating second wave of COVID-19 infections, resulting in strain on medical facilities in the country. The volunteers are playing a critical role in helping to fill gaps in care for patients. The system has been overburdened, and many patients have been turned away from care simply because hospitals do not have the capacity.
The number of new cases has risen to more than 400,000 per day. India now accounts for one in three positive COVID-19 cases worldwide. Including the strain on space in hospitals and staffing, hospitals are also running out of oxygen and other medical supplies critical for treatments.
“Salesian organizations across India are working to support families and front-line workers in the fight against COVID-19,” said Father Gus Baek, director of Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. “Salesian provinces around the globe are also working to send funding to help ongoing initiatives in India.”
India has the world’s fourth largest economy but more than 22 percent of the country lives in poverty. About 31 percent of the world’s multidimensionally poor children live in India, according to a report by the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative. A multidimensionally poor child is one who lacks at least one-third of 10 indicators, grouped into three dimensions of poverty: health, education and standard of living.
Salesian programs across India are primarily focused on education. Salesian primary and secondary education in the country helps youth prepare for later technical, vocational or university study. Other programs help to support poor youth and their families by meeting the basic needs of shelter, proper nutrition and medical care.
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Salesian Missions – India
World Bank – India