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How ChildFund Is Creating Awareness About COVID-19 And Helping Communities

As India experienced the deadly second wave of the coronavirus pandemic, which was worse than anything one could have imagined, with our healthcare systems and hospitals left struggling.

ChildFund in India once again stepped up to help, as they had done in the first wave. Their efforts supported primary, secondary and community healthcare centers with basic medical equipment and supplies.

Talking about how ChildFund helped communities battle COVID-19 crisis, Neelam Makhijani, CEO and Country Director, ChildFund India said,

Second wave was harder, was most difficult because of the numbers of deaths that were happening. But there was some kind of clarity about what we need to do and how to do. In the second wave we very quickly turned to medical equipment supply. We supplied and worked in 15 states. We have contributed about 2 million dollars already to buy equipment for the primary health care and community health centres. That was our first approach, everything was about India breathing. It was the scariest one, so we did equipment for the states and villages along with that we added the fruit baskets because livelihood was hurt again.

ChildFund has started response activities to the COVID crisis in Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Telangana, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Delhi. Currently, more than 500 people from ChildFund are working tirelessly in the COVID-19 relief initiative at the community level. Explaining that there was more fear of death among people in the second wave of COVID-19 and the challenges faced by ChildFund during the course, Neelam Makhijani added,

With the second wave, the fear factor was much higher than the first wave. And with the deaths, numbers going up, the biggest challenge we had was mobility and how to go out in the field. It's a huge moral dilemma any NGO would face. Do we sit in and not risk our life or we go out there and save life? I am so proud of my team in the field. Not once did we think about that we need to save ourselves. So we went out there.

But the challenges are not over yet. Doctors and experts have predicted a potential third wave of COVID-19 in the country. How the NGO is preparing for the same, highlighting that Neelam Makhijani said,

The next step that we are looking at is preparing for the third wave, where we are looking at setting up child friendly COVID care centres. We are also looking at organising mass vaccination drives across 15 states. We aim to vaccinate 1 million people over the next 9 months.

ChildFund is also disseminating information to create awareness, dispel myths and tackle misinformation around COVID-19. Further, ChildFund will continue to provide support to restore livelihood and ensure food security for marginalized families that have been economically affected by the pandemic.

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