Pausing and reflecting post the second wave of Covid
Ashish VR, Archana Kr and Anwesha Oburai take time to reflect on the spirit and efforts of our Covid Ninjas during the second wave of Covid19.
The past three months have been more than taxing! It goes unsaid when we state that almost each one of us have seen our own share of suffering and loss due to COVID-19. Despite this, many of our Solve Ninjas have stood up, taken charge and continue to work on multiple fronts to proactively address COVID-19 issues and support the larger ecosystem. Owing to our Solve Ninja spirit, we are glad to share with you that our work during the second wave reminds us of the power of citizens’ joining hands to save lives and protect communities from the fatal impact of COVID-19. It goes without saying that their participation is fuelling our mantra to ‘Solve Small, Dent Big!’
Here are some updates.
Covid Rural Support Group: Kuldeep Dantewadia is part of a group of volunteers who have facilitated (till now) 10,000 masks; 102 O2 cylinders, 200 oximeters and 89 ration kits across Karnataka, Odisha, Assam and Nagaland.
Fundraising: Reap Benefit has been supporting MASS (an NGO that empowers former devadasi women) by raising funds for food supplies. Till date, INR 2 Lakh has been crowdsourced. (To support the campaign click here.) 40+ youth from this community will soon be part of our Solve Ninja community!
Covid Bed Task Force to Covid Task Force: Gautam Prakash facilitated the creation of a platform where 20 NGOs in Bengaluru came together to address the duplication of bed requests. By centralizing bed request data and decentralizing the fulfilling of requests, each NGO anchored one of the 8 different zones in Bengaluru. They have successfully taken up more than 300+ requests in the span of 2 months. The platform is currently being used to address the livelihood, vaccination and ration needs of the people. For detailed info, please refer to this.
Solve Ninja Shahid’s Haadi Foundation worked onground to support 89+ vulnerable families with ration support in Bommanahalli, Bengaluru.
Mid to Long Term
92 Covid Ninjas (who chose to volunteer with us) are actively flexing their muscle in various covid-relief activities such as calling people in need and picking requests in partnership with 6 organizations (Covid Bed Task Force, Rural Development Panchayat Raj Karnataka, Indus Action, Project Statecraft, Srikakulam MP Office, 2 volunteer groups — Aditya Dubey & Plasma Group).
A total of 1057 requests were worked on by our Solve Ninjas, which included
- Looking for hospital beds, medicines, plasma, ambulance services.
- Calling ASHA workers to understand the state of PHCs and health infrastructure
- Calling pregnant and lactating mothers to collect information to support them
- Data collection and analysis, digital communication and tech support
Many of our New Youth Board members first worked on an information helpline (and led 20+ volunteers in their problem-solving journey) by addressing over 100+ requests to support those in need. Some of them went ahead to play a significant role in the Covid Bed Task Force.
Shout out to Youth Board Members Lavitra, Sneha, Lalith, Sreekar, Rajashekhar, Shruty, Smriti and Namrata. As we mentioned before, they have anchored multiple pieces around CBTF, RB Covid helpline, CYR Campaign, Covid Repository and Covid Ninja Volunteer Engagement.
To read about their experience, click here.
What to look out for
Vaccine Equity: In efforts to create a long lasting impact, our team has been delving into methods to make vaccinations more accessible to vulnerable communities. After thorough ground-work, we have taken the call to look into strengthening the primary health care network that supports 70% of Indian citizens who do not have access to private hospitals.
Our campaign of #ownyourPHC has been launched to this end. We are crowdsourcing information on the status of Public Health Care Centres (PHCs) across India to display this data and urge citizens to improve their PHCs. We will be sharing audit info as stories (individual PHC level) on our social media platforms (keep an eye out on these) to build a conversation around this issue.
As of now we have received 114 PHC audit responses and 151 citizen feedback on PHC/vaccine centres from 14 districts across India. Our data team and volunteers are working through immense data to help us share reports and truly shocking findings!
If you believe safe, low cost and universal healthcare is the need of the hour, help us learn more about your PHC. Here are the links to do so:
For Kannada : https://forms.gle/EUWXLT7JySqUixaJ8
For English : https://forms.gle/oLGqpNbkQRbuSyQe6
Citizen Feedback Link
For English: https://forms.gle/nttrtrsdwknnzoAX8
For Kannada: https://forms.gle/UQJNfwqdR7PkqYH48
This initiative focuses on supporting vulnerable communities to access the Government schemes to overcome loss due to covid. To begin with, the Government of Karnataka has announced COVID 19 relief packages for vulnerable communities such as farmers, cab drivers, flower vendors, etc. We have partnered with Indus Action, an NGO that works on rights and entitlement-based issues to explore spreading awareness and offering support.
Call Your Representative (CYR) Campaign
The second edition of this campaign is being anchored by our New Youth Board Members (Sneha, Smriti and Shreekar) to reach out to all the 198 nodal officers in BBMP limits. This is to understand and hold the local Government accountable for COVID19 preparedness at ward levels. This includes enquiring about the vaccine status, ward committee meetings, covid budgets, etc. In fact, after reading an article, they reached out to two sarpanch leaders to understand how they made their villages covid-free. As of now, we have 5 Solve Ninjas who have called 11 Nodal Officers.
“At first I was a little nervous, I didn’t know how he’d respond, but he spoke nicely to me, and answered all my questions! I asked him about how the vaccination program was going, and he told me his experience of getting all people below the poverty line vaccinated — I asked him if he needs any help, and he invited me to the WDC meet, and so I’ll be going there on Tuesday. Now I know whom to approach any time I have a problem in my ward, and this whole experience has made me a better person, as well as a better Solve Ninja.” shared Shreekar- Youth Board Member.
If you are a citizen of Bengaluru and don’t know the status of Covid-19 efforts in your ward, here is a chance to hold them accountable and be a Solve Ninja by supporting them. Click on this link and follow the instructions to start your journey: http://wa.me/918095500118?text=regcyr
COVID19 Best Practices
We are also researching and collating best practices across the nation and placing them on the Civic Forum for future reference. This will help policy makers, NGOs and citizens to learn & implement them in case of future disasters. Have a look at some of the work here.
If you have come across some best practices and want to contribute, please write to them and share them on the forum.
Finally, a huge shout out to Siddhant (Tech Intern and Solve Ninja), GRE (Tech), Krithika & Sukriti (Partnership), Nikhila (Data) for powering the initiatives.