Bracing up to the Covid challenge, Rotarians across the country have reached out to the frontline warriors, hospitals, health departments, needy families and migrant labourers during the lockdown. As the pandemic raged infecting lakhs of people, Rotary clubs have done Covid-relief projects worth $30 million till October, including setting up Covid care centres, donating equipment, PPE kits and other critical supplies to hospitals and distributing food and grocery kits on a large scale to thousands of needy families.
With hospitals running out of beds for Covid patients and more people being home quarantined, PDG Dr Hariprasad Somani, RID 3132, in consultation with presidents of six Rotary clubs in Latur and district officers including PDG Vijay Rathi and DGE Dr Omprakash Motipawale, supplied oxygen concentrator machines to needy patients at their homes. Many Rotarians donated for the purchase of 11 machines for the project managed by Sudhir Lature and Raj Dhoot.
Latur district collector G Sreekanth and mayor Vikrant Gojamgunde appreciated the efforts of Rotary. “After seeing the response from patients, Rotary clubs have decided to purchase more such oxygen machines for the community,” said PDG Somani.
RC Belur, RID 3291, donated 6,600 PPE kits, 6,600 N95 masks and 3,300 face shields to the frontline warriors. Karuna – Save our Saviours is a global grant project that has received $47,774 from TRF. A sizeable amount was crowdfunded through social media. The project was conceived by the club’s medical director Anand Agarwal with inputs from his friends — Ayan Sen from Singapore, Monalisa Sen from Belgium, Arpita Chatterjee and Arkadeep Kumar from Australia. “We are thankful to our global partners RCs Singapore and Singapore North who played an active role in fundraising,” said Aloke Kumar Kanodia, president, RC Belur. DGE Prabir Chatterjee, PDG Ravi Sehgal, secretary Amar Kumar Malhotra and club members were present at the distribution of Covid kits.
RC Calcutta New Alipore, RID 3291, gave smartphones to school girls in a remote village for attending online classes during the lockdown, said club president Ajay Baldawa.
DG Rajesh Agarwal presented three BiPap machines to the Krishna Sarvajanik Hospital under a global grant project for Covid-relief initiatives by RC Himatnagar, RID 3054. DRFC Lalit Sharma, PDG Jagdish Patel and other Rotarians were present at the handover event.
Equipment to Indore Hospital
DG Gajendra Singh Narang, RID 3040, handed over 10 BiPap machines (for infusing air into lungs), 25 nebulisers, 100 oximeters, 500 special non-breathing masks, a coffee vending machine, 25 wall clocks and supportive items for treatment of corona patients at the MRTB Hospital in Indore.
This global grant project was done jointly by RCs Indore Meghdoot and Indore North with RC Kathmandu, RID 3292, as their international partner. RC Indore Meghdoot, the implementing club, is doing Covid-relief projects worth $35,000 to support hospitals treating corona patients. “IPDG Dhiran Datta supported us in this GG project and found the global partner,” said Ghanshyam Singh, IPP of RC Indore Meghdoot.
Over 100 reusable PPE kits with Rotary Wheel emblazoned on it were donated to two charitable hospitals and a dialysis centre by RCs New Panvel and Panvel Central, RID 3131, in the presence of DG Rashmi Kulkarni, RIDE Dr Mahesh Kotbagi, DGN Dr Anil Parmar, DGE Pankaj Shah, RPIC Dr Deepak Shikarpur and district PDGs.
RC Amritsar North, RID 3070, had a project meeting for distribution of PPE kits at the circuit house in the city for the district grant project sanctioned under IPDG Sunil Nagpal’s tenure.
Grocery kits were donated to daily wagers, migrant families and roadside vendors by Rotary Bangalore Lakeside, RID 3190, through crowdfunding from the residents’ welfare association.
In the first phase, the club reached out to 1,300 families in a migrant colony. As the lockdown stretched, the Rotarians helped another 2,000 families in the eastern and southern parts of Bengaluru, this time with support from the Azim Premji Philanthropic Initiatives (APPI), at a project cost of ₹ 14 lakh. “We have been working with APPI in other projects for long and they were happy to partner with us,” said Jayanta Tiwari, club member.
In the third phase, with funding of €22,000 from Freudenberg International, a German corporate, the Rotarians distributed groceries to orphanages, auto drivers, Asha Kiran workers, transgender communities and rag pickers in various parts of the city.
The club partnered with Project Durga, a women’s empowerment programme, and provided ration kits and toiletries to 3,000 more needy people. “We have travelled to around 10 villages spanning 400km from the city in the four months of lockdown,” said Tiwari.
The club is providing medical equipment and PPE kits to hospitals in Victoria, Bowring, Nimhans and Kidwai in Bengaluru, Mysore, Mandya and Kolar. Also, the club is supporting Mercy Angels, a group of volunteers, to perform the last rites of Covid victims.
Special devices to GH, Madurai
To protect children from Covid, RC Madurai North, RID 3000, has donated equipment worth ₹ 7 lakh to the children’s division of the Rajaji Government Hospital, Madurai, funded by Smile Microfinance, said IPP D N Govardan.
In a novel fundraiser, the Interact Club of Lakshmi School, Madurai, sponsored by RC Madurai Midtown, RID 3000, organised a digital art competition for students. “The Interactors raised ₹ 2.32 lakh with the help of their parents and handed over the money to the Madurai district collector Dr T G Vinay,” said R Srinivasan, Interact advisor. The Interact club also donated Oximeters, PPE kits and furniture to the district collectorate, police commissioner’s office and the district health department.
Oxygen line station at Dondaicha
RC Dondaicha Seniors, RID 3060, set up a central oxygen line through which a single cylinder can meet the needs of 12 Covid patients simultaneously. This was installed within 24 hours of the request made by doctors at the Sub District Civil Hospital, Dondaicha. This service, costing ₹ 3.47 lakh, helps to avoid or minimise Covid deaths. The club will maintain the oxygen supply network. A swab collection chamber has also been set up at a monthly expenditure of ₹ 35,000.
The project was inaugurated by legislator Jaykumar Rawal; DG Prashant Jani, AG Anish Shah, participated in the online inaugural.
With increasing number of patients pushing up the demand of oxygen cylinders, the club has decided to supply five cylinders daily to the Sub District Civil Hospital. The monthly expenditure is ₹ 75,000.