“With lockdown, there wasn't much left to sustain the basic survival, hence Sense India decided to activate the local network of partners and parents to identify deserving families and extended support through existing donors.”

Reaching Out in the Time of a Pandemic

It is an unexpected situation to be in. To experience a pandemic in the 21st century where everyone is inside their homes, safe and collecting every piece of necessity they would need to survive till the end of the apocalypse. While many were inside their homes, some have always been there taking care of loved ones who needed attention, love and guidance all day long.“Having a child with deafblindness means that one parent has to remain at home as care-giver and interpreter, which means one person less to go out and earn” said Mr. Akhil Paul, Director of Sense International India. So when COVID-19 sunk its claws in, staying in was not a big ask. The problem came when it came to sustaining themselves.

Sense International India caught early on the problems that would come with the pandemic. Since it knows its demography well, it was concerned with how the families would sustain themselves. Most of the deafblind children and adults associated with Sense India International come from a daily wage background and hence the lockdown is extremely difficult for them. Earning a living became difficult and so did the ability to provide nutritious food.

Understanding their responsibility, Sense International India started its COVID-19 relief campaign. Its aim was to reach 1000 families of deafblind people and stock them with a month’s ration for three months starting in April. “With lockdown, there wasn't much left to sustain the basic survival hence Sense India decided to activate the local network of partners and parents to identify deserving families and extended support through existing donors.” said Mr. Paul. Ration kits were prepared in full force. Each ration kit had items of daily hygiene and nutritional needs covered for a month which included wheat, rice, oil, dal, mixed spices, sugar, tea, salt, hand sanitizer and masks.

It was the tireless effort of the staff at Sense International India and the generous hearts of the donors that came forward in this time of uncertainty and extreme vulnerability and saw beyond themselves to look after the other. After receiving such a response Mr. Paul said, “We are grateful to all donors who responded promptly and in the times ahead the donor fraternity needs to accept that our work with deafblind people is human intensive so we will continue to need their financial support to cover human resources costs.”

Ration Kits for the month of April have reached 1000 families. There is still a long way to go to rebuild and restore. Families with deafblind members still need all the help they can get to be safe from the pandemic. To support the COVID-19 Relief please click the link and donate

https://fundraisers.giveindia.org/campaigns/emergency-ration-support-to-persons-with-deafblindness-and-their-families

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