Kannada Article by Sri Ravindra Deshmukh, Vijayavani kannada daily is translated to English by Sri Shambu Nashipudi
We are in the midst of difficult times, the corona pandemic has exposed the limitations of human ability to deal with difficult situations. The increasing number of infected people and the deaths along with the lockdown has impacted the lives of many people in the society. The common people are looking around for any signs of HOPE and positivity. The situation and the corresponding needs of people is different compared to pandemic times of last year. In the midst of gloom and widespread panic, few of the Sangha based organizations and youth groups have been at the helm of service activities and they are turning out to last ray hope for people and society.
During difficult times, the Sangha based organizations in an effort to provide solace, have taken the path of social service. When people have drawn into a shell amidst self centered thoughts of ‘hope nothing happens to us’, but few of the organization and individuals stepped out of their comfort zone and are working for the greater good of society and fellow human beings. Providing food to affected people, bedding to patients in hospitals, conducting blood donation camps, vaccination drives, medical oxygen, vital information, covid isolation centers are the new forms of social service in response to Covid pandemic. Its important to have discussions about these kind of social service in the media and society to improve the positive and optimism and the society in large have to appreciate and provide required support to these organizations.
Blood donation is the best donation, people in the age group of 18-45 are the most likely donors of blood, but the Corona vaccination has put up a difficult situation in blood donation. According to medical experts, individuals can’t donate blood for 60 days post their Covid vaccination and this will led to shortage of blood donors in coming days. Considering this fact, organizations like Samartha Bharat has conducted blood donation drives in various places around the state in the last few days. In the last 13 days, blood donations drives were conducted in Bangalore’s Jayanagar, Electronics City, Kadugodi, Raja Rajeshwari Nagar, Chandapura and in few places ourside Bangalore like Kalburugi, Turukere in Sira taluk. Around 60 to 75 youths have participated in each of the blood donation drives. “Difficulties are enormous but when sincere efforts to made CHANGE is possible” says Rajesh Padmar of Samartha Bharat organization.
COVID Telecenters, Seva Bharathi, an integral part of Sangh Organization, has set up COVID telecenters to connect people with experts for providing information about Covid related queries and disseminating information.Few of the centres across the state are already set up. The contact number of Bangalore center is 93437-51434 and Hubli center is 74117-34247, The center provides information about bed availability in hospitals, availability of Oxygen cylinders, Ambulance service, counselling for infected Covid patients and their family members. Seva Bharathi is conducting a special drive to register around 2000 Bangalore based apartments and communities for Covid vaccination and a drive is already conducted on few of the apartments based on vaccine availability. As vaccination is a powerful remedy against the pandemic, this drive is given special importance, said the co-ordinators Sri RadhaKrishna Holla and Sri Praveen Patavardhan.
Food Service to homes of Covid Patients, Yuva Brigade is providing food service to homes of covid patients who are not in a position to prepare food at their homes. In Bangalore’s Jayanagar, Girinagar, Basavangudi, Banashankari food is provided to around 250 people. Yuva Brigade’s 16 volunteers are part of this service and this service has started in the twin cities of Hubli-Dharwad. Mentor of Yuva Brigade Sri Chakravarthy Sulibele said, all these activities and services are provided with utmost care and by following all the guidelines in dealing with Covid patients. In Mysore a war room is set up to co-ordinate all the service activities and few of the volunteers are working even during the night times. Along with Haveri dist, Blood donation camps are conducted in few of the Districts of North Karnataka.
Adamya’s Anna Dhana service is provided to lakhs of children even during the first phase of Covid pandemic. Few of the Sangha organizations are also providing food packets to 2500 to 3000 people on a daily basis, Along with these activities, Aadmya organization is providing daily anna dhana to people in Jayanagar and Raja Rajeshwari areas and this activity has started since Sri Ananthkumar’s birth anniversary celebrations. BBMP’s sanitary workers, Auto drivers, flower sellers and small time shopkeepers have benefited from this daily anna dhana. Dr Tejaswini Ananthkumar, the founder member of Adamya Chetana says, in times of distress and hardship even any kind of small work has greater impact.
Youth for Seva (YfS) Organization’s Health kit and Telemedicine. The Organization YFS has wide reach in the social service sector. the organization along with the corporate world helped the Covid affected people with the health kits. The kit had Oxymeter, digital thermometer and essential medicines and it was distributed to people who were tested positive who needed home isolation and didn’t require hospitalization thus reducing the load on the Hospitals. In the first phase 25 thousand kits were distributed among needy people.
YfS along with Adamya Chetna distributed food to Health workers in 17 hospitals in Bangalore. YfS initiative of ‘Doctor for Seva’ health volunteers along with Doctors provided consultation over phone to concerned Covid patients and their family members. The home treatment methods and the need to follow social distancing guidelines were provided to pandemic victims and they didn’t have to visit hospitals thus reducing the load on Hospitals infrastructure, said the YfS founder and Chief Mentor Venkatesh Murthy.
School converted to COVID care center, in case of COVID patients who would need Hospitalization but not intensive care were provided treatment in COVID care center. Rashtronna Seva Parishat converted two of its schools to COVID center’s. The school located in Banashankari’s 6th phase was converted to a 100 bed size COVID care center and the school located in Ramamurthy nagar was converted to a 60 bed Covid care center. Doctors and Nurses provided the required care around the clock.
The selfless volunteers and Organizations with bent of mind for social service are the real beacons of hope , they not only provide the much needed help but also provide the required direction to society during the times of distress and calamity. They are the exemplary role models of how with compassion and service Humans and society can overcome any difficult situations.