Covid-19: India-US body launches initiative for underprivileged in India


Residents queue up to collect milk inside the Dharavi slum during a government-imposed nationwide lockdown as a preventive measure against the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, in Mumbai on April 6, 2020. (Photo by INDRANIL MUKHERJEE / AFP)
Residents queue up to collect milk inside the Dharavi slum during a government-imposed nationwide lockdown as a preventive measure against the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, in Mumbai on April 6, 2020. (Photo by INDRANIL MUKHERJEE / AFP)

An Indian-American non-profit body has launched an initiative to serve and protect underprivileged communities in India against the coronavirus pandemic, as well as to help them emerge strongly through the resulting social and economic crisis

The American India Foundation (AIF), which was founded in 2001 in the aftermath of the devastating Gujarat earthquake, on Friday (3) said it will use its existing “service delivery platforms” comprising frontline health workers, teachers, community mobilisers and local self-governments to contribute to the COVID-19 preparedness and response and strengthen India’s healthcare system.

“We believe that India’s poor, who have limited access to the right information, healthcare and are predominantly employed or self-employed in the unorganised sector, are expected to bear a disproportionate brunt of the economic fallout of this unprecedented health emergency,” AIF Chief Executive Officer Nishant Pandey said, launching the intervention framework for COVID-19 response.

“In the medium to long term, the impact of job losses, disruption in children’s education and social isolation might turn out to be greater than those from the health emergency,” he said, adding that the organisation will try to ensure that the communities with the greatest needs are not affected the hardest during this crisis.

The AIF’s intervention framework for COVID-19 response includes behaviour change communication, promoting community preparedness and building long-term resilience of communities.