During the corona pandemic lockdown, the Rotary clubs of RID 3190 rose to the challenge to help the people of Karnataka in various ways. As of May 4, the district had raised ₹1.1 crore as donations, distributed 6.7 lakh meals, 15 lakh kg foodgrains, ₹35 lakh worth medical equipment, and 1.3 lakh medical items. Video capsules of the activities of Rotary clubs were circulated across the district.
Members of RC Bangalore West, along with Goldman Sachs, provided grocery kits to 15,000 migrant families stranded in Marathahalli, Varthur and Madiwala localities. “We distributed 225 tonnes of food grains, costing ₹1.06 crore, in 10 days,” said club member, PDG Rajendra Rai. Each bag had 10 kg rice, dal, cooking oil, spices, wheat flour and other essential items. The club, along with RC Bangalore Couples, provided 1,000 coronavirus testing kits worth ₹11 lakh to the Rangadore Memorial Hospital to enable free screening, which otherwise costs ₹4,500, for underprivileged people.
Around 10,000 pamphlets were distributed to spread awareness about the virus and importance of following precautions, giving details of the availability of free testing facilities.
Earlier some farmers were dumping their yield as there was no transport available. Immediately the Rotarians reached out to them.
— Yvonne John Daniel, RC Bangalore Kalyan
RC Indiranagar partnered with XLRI Alumni Group and Global SME Hub to distribute 70,000 grocery kits worth ₹6.5 lakh, and launched six crowd funding campaigns to provide PPE kits to doctors and medical staff and more ration kits. The club contributed ₹20 lakh to the PM CARES Fund, with one member, Ghanshyam Agarwal, donating ₹15 lakh. “In March when the pandemic began, he became an AKS member by giving ₹1.04 crore to TRF,” said Club President Manoj Agarwal. The club partnered with four other clubs to provide testing equipment costing ₹17 lakh to a diagnostic centre.
Rotarians of RC Bangalore Manyata procured tonnes of vegetables from farmers in Kolar and distributed them to people. “It is a win-win for both parties. Earlier some farmers were dumping their yield as there was no transport available. Immediately the Rotarians reached out to them,” said Yvonne John Daniel, member of RC Bangalore Kalyan.
Harsha M V, a member of the same club, is working with the City Police Commissioner Bhasker Rao and ADGP P S Sandhu to operate drones to create public awareness on COVID-19 and for surveillance of people defying lockdown rules in market places and containment zones.
Rotary Clubs of Vidyaranyapura, Vidyapeeta, E-club Bengaluru Green City, Kolar and Bangalore Junction, distributed food packets and grocery kits in their localities. RC Bangalore Chimney Hill provided masks to sanitation workers and refreshments to police personnel on COVID duty. Rotary Bangalore Palmville donated 100 PPE kits to Victoria Hospital. RC Bangalore Orchards provided 10 testing kiosks, 1,000 PPEs and 2,000 masks to government hospitals, besides raising ₹1.5 crore partnering with two other organisations.
As mid-day meals was abruptly halted for students of the Rotary Bangalore Vidyalaya sponsored by RC Bangalore, the members gave ration kits to the families to last for the lockdown period. Similar service was extended to Home of Hope, an old-age home and another orphanage in the city. The club arranged food for animals too. The ambulance that the club donated to CUPA, an animal shelter, was used to go around residential areas with volunteers feeding stray animals.
Members of RC Bangalore East, along with their families, prepared lunch and dinner in the club’s community kitchen and distributed to two lakh people. Former members who had left the club also contributed generously for the cause, said Club President M Stephen Paul.
Rotarians of Rotary Bangalore South East are volunteering for a door to door screening in a 500-household locality with the support of doctors and paramedics.
DG Sameer Hariani conducted a virtual charter ceremony for 33 members of a new club — RC Bangalore Social and “sent their charter certificates by email. Two more virtual charters are in the pipeline,” he said.
The district has around 5,200 members across 130 Rotary clubs and “every club has been doing remarkable projects providing relief to the aged, sick and poor. The members are quick to understand the needs of the people and respond immediately,” he said.