LOCKDOWN and COVID-19
Dr A V Baliga Memorial Trust
COVID19-SMALL STEPS – Big Impact – REACHING TO UNREACHED DURING LOCKDOWN (COVID19)
It was a shocking news for majority of the communities of various project areas of Baliga Trust dwelling in slums and resettlement colonies in North, North West, East and South East districts of Delhi when lockdown due to COVID19 declared by the Central Government from 24th March 2020 onwards. These areas are inhabited by primarily migrant workers with lower socio economic background. People are belonging to informal sector and daily wage earners such as factory labourers, daily wagers, rickshaw pullers, construction workers and cleaners. They lost their jobs and suffering for their food which ultimately put question mark on their survival. Baliga Trust has been working on the issues of education, livelihood, child rights, women’s empowerment, health and environment with the support from various donors. We have a strong rapport with the community in these areas as community-based approach is followed since beginning of our intervention.
The struggle for two meals a day among daily wage earners, almost all migrant workers was visible everywhere. Baliga Trust came forward to support those who were in urgent need, no matter they belong to which area. Some of the glimpses of our support system are as follows:
Distribution of Dry Ration: Baliga Trust managed to distribute Dry Ration for 7-15 days to over 3700 families (Over 24000 People) in our project areas in North, North West, East and South East Districts. And also, in non-project areas in South and North East Districts. We may reach another 2500 families in coming days with dry ration and hygiene kits as negotiations are going on with potential donors for the purpose. Commitments for 600 food baskets with hygiene anf dignity kits were already there.
Cooked food Distribution: Baliga Trust mobilized, collaborated and linked with many organizations like DCPCR, AIDENT and Society for Future Generation for organizing distribution of cooked food distribution. Catered to over 12000 people in North East, South and North. We are also associated with Delhi Govt. for cooked food distribution and Ration supply to the people in various location. Another 1000 people per day were provided cooked food with I-PAC & SWIGGY.
Family to Families Kitchen: We conceptualized and started this program with two major objectives – A. providing food to more vulnerable people such as old age people, sick, challenged (disable), woman headed families with young children, unable to access any Govt. services. B. Providing livelihood opportunities to SHG women or petty vendors. Over 135 people getting two cooked meals a day with strict monitoring of the quality and quantity of the food apart from preventive and protective measures against COVID-19. Supported by TDH, Germany, India Program. It will continue till 30th June 2020 at least.
Volunteering in Difficult Circumstances: Though, majority of the team members extended their support to needy families to the possible extent even after the Lockdown and fear of COVID 19 but some of them showed their great commitment and empathy to respond the emergency. We would specially like to mention Rajender, Amar, Irshad, Shahnawaj, Vijay Prakash, Nadeem and a number of youth volunteers. Rajender volunteered with Roji Roti Adhikar Abhiyan and monitoring the distribution of Ration apart from distribution of Ration kits and mobilizing local level resources. Amar helped in distribution of Dry Ration, cooked food and provision of Ration. He is MLA nominated observer for distribution of Govt. Ration in Holambikalan. Nadeem and Irshad in Okhala had been directly engaged in raising resources for providing dry ration and cooked food to thousands of people apart from distribution. Vijay Prakash raised funds of over Rs.3,20,000/- through his personal contact to support over 400 most needy families in East, South east and North East Districts of Delhi apart from provision of cooked meals for over 1000 people across Delhi. Shahnawaj took the charge of distribution of ration and cooked meal in East district apart from raising resources as well.
Helping Jharkhand Government to extend support to migrant workers who stranded in East Delhi. We contacted 201 such laborer and provided facilities like dry ration access to Govt. services as well
Awareness on COVID 19: We have contact details of thousands of our community members. Our team members raising awareness on COVID19 among them through mobile and using WHO’s IEC and MoHFW. Over 5000 such sessions were conducted engaging 38 staff members.
Collaborations: Delhi Commission for Protection of Child Rights. They provided an appreciation cum recommendation letter to Baliga Trust.
Networking: Campaign Against Child Labour, RTE Forum, CRAICP and NEENV. A group of activists wrote to all concerned stakeholders including PM for adequate and proper relief work for the children and community especially for the families of migrant workers and daily wagers.
Fund Raising: We could mobilize over Rs. Thirty lakhs thanks to Terre Des Hommes, Germany India Program, Plan International (India), ESSEL Social Welfare Foundation, Tech Mahindra Foundation, Save the Children Bal Raksha, United Way of Delhi, Delhi Postal Circle Welfare Fund, North and South division Goonj and Delhi Commission for Protection of Child Rights (DCPCR) and many individuals such as Ms Gopa Chanda, Board members, staff members who came forward to mitigate the risk of starvation during the lockdown. Remarkably, Mr Vijay Prakash raised over Rs. 3,30,000/- and Dr Koninika Ray raised fund of over Rs.1,50,000/- for relief works which helped to extend support to less reached people in some non project areas as well. We expect over twenty lakhs rupees more to be raised for relief work and rehabilitation.
Livelihood Plan: Plan for rehabilitation of families affected from violence and further by lockdown is in process. The planned activities include Family to Families Kitchen, Digital Services to the community, Mask making and many more depends on the availability of fund and demand supply chain requirements.
Vocational Training: All VT Classes are running through online services.
Association with District Administration in context with letter from MHA, GoI: Request letters to DCs of concerned districts- North, North West, East and South East were submitted. Only DC, East contacted on phone on 7th April 2020 and assured to engage us in Awareness program. MHA is updated with the report as per compliance.
Strength: Baliga Trust has a strong Network across Delhi and across the Country. We have a dedicated band of volunteers in Mangolpuri, Sultanpuri, Prem Nagar Kiradi, Holambikalan, Narela, Gandhinagar, Ajeet Nagar, Kaushikpuri, Raghwarpura, Shaeed Nagar, Gandhi Nagar, Jamia Nagar, Kanchanjunga, Tehkhand – all in various districts of Delhi. We are thankful to Delhi Commission for Protection of Child Rights (DCPCR).
Our team members are in monitoring positions to observe the distribution of dry ration and cooked food being supplied by the Govt. in North and North West Delhi.
Challenges: 1.Transportation of Dry ration.
- Inadequate supply.
- More unreached people- less supply.
- Unawareness on COVID19 and not taking seriously among less privileged people.
- Stigma and rumour of COVID19
- Increased violence against women and children
Requirements: 1. Dry Ration kits and Hygiene kits for one month for 3000 families.
- Support for raising awareness on preventive and protective majors against COVID19
- Income Generation based activities such as to engage women in cooking foods for thousands.
- A vehicle for transportation of foods and materials
- PPEs for our staff and volunteers.
- Psycho social emotional support
- Engagement of children through digital platforms.