NGO linked to RSS claims to have raised $22 million for Covid-19 relief
A non-government organisation with links to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), Sewa International on Thursday said it has been able to mobilise over US $ 22 million in assistance to offer aid to India in the wake of the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The organisation through its global chapters and with the support of the diaspora says it has used this money to help procure medicines, medical equipment and help those in need.
According to information provided by the organisation, the US chapter raised over $4.7 million dollars within the first 100 hours of starting a fundraising campaign. Jack Dorsey, CEO of social media giant Twitter, who donated $15 million to help address the crisis, gave $2.5 million to Sewa International.
“So far, more than 150 thousand donors from around the world have come forward to support the initiative. Apart from USA, Sewa chapters in Japan, Australia, UK, Canada, Europe, Arab region, Singapore and many more have been actively participating in this huge campaign,” said a functionary of Sewa International.
Listing the purchases that have been made from the funds raised globally, the functionary said oxygen concentrators, oximeters, ventilators, co-ventilators, BIPAP and CPAPs have been provided to different government hospitals, Covid Care Centres and charitable institutions undertaking treatment for Covid-19 patients.
“So far, over 9000 oxygen concentrators, 22,000 oximeters, 250 ventilators and 260 co-ventilators procured through funds mobilized from across the world and are being delivered, saving precious lives in the country. Similarly, over 1200 BIPAP and CPAP machines have been organized to help Covid-19 patients going through respiratory problems and struggling with low oxygen issues. Sewa International volunteers have distributed over 20,000 freshly cooked food packets and 40,000 ration kits to those convalescing at their respective homes in quarantine,” the functionary said.
Started in 1993, it works out of 25 countries and works with the diaspora. Sewa International secretary Shyam Parande said, “Our organisation has always worked to alleviate pain and suffering of communities and assist people who are in distress. After the bubonic plague, the Covid-19 pandemic has easily been recognized as the biggest crisis faced by humanity. It is the marginalised that are most adversely impacted. Our commitment is to stand together and work selflessly to save lives.”