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Sunday, December 05 2021

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Right To Live aids health care centres through Covid relief projects

Covid – 19 has elicited a two-year-long pandemic all around the world. Humanity has faced tremendous hardships, but what about those who do not have access to any help, be it health facilities or essential amenities? The students in Government schools lost precious years of learning as they could not afford to attend online classes due to the huge digital divide prevalent in India. Right To Live NGO, Bengaluru has time and again been prosocial and philanthropic in its vision, aiming at providing health and educational facilities for the underprivileged. In the premise of the pandemic, the NGO hosted several Covid relief projects. In an exclusive interview with NewsKarnataka, the Executive Director of Right To Live, T. V. Sridhar, expressed his views.

What are Covid relief projects?

The pandemic affected almost all the projects of Right To Live as they were mostly centred around the students studying in Government schools. This brought Right To Live to rethink their strategies, albeit temporarily, to shift focus to Covid relief and adapt to the new normal in education.

Maintaining Right To Live’s spirit, vision, and motto, the NGO crafted several new projects to bridge the digital divide between the impoverished in rural and urban areas. Some of them include:

a) Providing laptops to underprivileged students studying in 10th standard (100+ students benefitted)

b) Virtual mentoring of students by connecting them with corporate volunteers (80+ students)

c) Setting up of internet facility in Government schools in hilly regions (6 schools in DK District)

d) Setting up of Computer Labs in Government PU colleges (10+ colleges)

Speaking on the same, Sridhar said, “projects related to Covid specifically, were implemented too, such as setting up Covid First Aid Centres in over 160 villages of Chikkaballlapura in association with Dr. Anil Kumar of Bagepalli Taluk who trained the village youth to be the first line of defence for villagers showing the first sign of Coronavirus symptoms. More than 100,000 people benefitted from this project, resulting in a significant reduction of persons needing hospitalisation and zero deaths.” Improving the health infrastructure of rural health care centres by providing equipment has also been a primary goal of Right To Live in the pandemic.

In many rural areas in India, the medical infrastructure is practically non-existent, except for an occasional private medical practitioner and poorly managed Public Health Centers. This project is a part of Right To Live’s effort to equip the rural and Government hospitals with the critical medical infrastructure required for Covid treatment and beyond.

One of the Covid care centres Right To Live aided was the Government Covid Care Centre in Kalaburagi. In this Government Covid Care Centre, the highest number of cases were treated in the entire Kalaburagi District during the second wave of Covid – 19. This Centre was recognised and appreciated by Covid Administration Officials of the district. Right To Live provided 2 BiPAP (Bi-level Positive Airway Pressure), essential medical equipment used while treating chronic respiratory diseases. For other public health care centres, Right To Live provided the BPL Ultima Multi Para Monitor. “Multi Para Monitor is mostly used in Emergency Care treatment for post operations monitoring and for the continuous monitoring of some critical illnesses. It is also used to monitor the Oxygen Saturation Level, Pulse rate, BP etc., which are vital in Covid treatment,” the Executive Director explained.

The Right Collaboration

Right To Live had approached Wipfli Foundation, USA, to provide support for Covid Relief Projects to help people who are desperately in need of funds/treatment. Wipfli positively responded. The NGO presented several Covid Relief projects already being undertaken. Detailed discussions were held, and after due verification, Wipfli selected Right To Live to receive their generous grant. Sridhar informed that the grant comprised of donations from the Wipfli Foundation and individual employee donations. Several employees throughout the organisation supported the call to donate to a worthy cause.

“During project execution, Right To Live included a senior member from Wipfli India as part of the Core Committee to make joint decisions in identifying the relief efforts. Further, Right To Live invited the senior executives of Wipfli for the inauguration of the equipment provided to rural hospitals. Periodic utilisation and impact reports are provided to Wipfli management for their reference,” he added.

Passing dark clouds 

Most often than not, the kindest of work would see the hardest of paths. Although Right To Live wanted to ensure that the relief efforts reached the most deserving and needy people, the implementation of the projects faced a few challenges in administration. However, the NGO developed a robust and detailed process to verify several requests for support. For example, to support Covid affected students, Right To Live reached out to the headmasters of the schools to identify the needy beneficiaries.

BPL card, Covid Reports, Death Certificates were used to ensure the benefits reached the most deserving affected persons. Right To Live also prioritised the elderly and pregnant women while distributing grocery kits.

What’s next?

 The Executive Director revealed that Right To Live wishes to improve the lives of the underprivileged by providing appropriate and timely interventions. Our projects are aligned to support students from Government schools, given they are the country’s future. As internet technology has become pervasive worldwide, the students of Government schools shouldn’t be on a backfoot, owing to the digital divide. In line with the above, some of the projects that are currently being considered are, expansion of smart classrooms with top quality digital academic content, providing access to the latest and high impact courses to college students, setting up of Computer Labs in Government colleges; providing digital vocational skills to rural youth, supporting higher education of poor but bright students and setting up of internet facility and a digital library in Government schools.

“We seek active support from like-minded individuals and corporates who wish to make a significant impact on society and make India great again!” Sridhar signed off.

For more contact:

T. V. Sridhar, Executive Director (98452 03175)

or visit the website: https://www.righttolive.org

Siri Shekar

The author is a student reporter who is also pursuing Psychology and English Literature. A wanderer searching for faces that inspire an optimistic place about the world, she hunts for different human experiences, not just leads for a story.

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