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“The Samaritan in Covid Crisis”

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The Samaritan in Covid Crisis
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Debasis Patnaik, Red Swastik Society

While many of us are working from home, catching up on the latest shows, spending quality time with our family, at the comfort of our homes during this lockdown, there are also many people who aren’t as fortunate. The lockdown has ended up being a very stressful time for them.

In these testing times, Bhubaneswar-based leading social organization, Red Swastik Society, Odisha Chapter has taken all efforts to reach out to these people and bring a smile on their faces. Debasis Patnaik, the Secretary-cum-Treasurer of the organization has spearheaded the initiative and served over 35,000 people across the state during the lockdown period.

“The nationwide lockdown imposed due to coronavirus pandemic had severely hit many poor and rural families. Daily wage labourers were among the worst affected because their survival depends on daily wages. So, we decided to render relief works to those in need with the contribution extended by my school friends,” says he.

Food Distribution Drive:-

The organization believes that hunger is as big a threat as coronavirus. And, during these testing times, this organization has undertaken initiatives to provide food to the underprivileged who have been affected by the ongoing pandemic.

The organization distributed ration to 8,200 individuals and migrant workers across the city hit by coronavirus lockdown that can take care of them for 15 days and 6,000 food packets to needy families in Samantarapur. As many as 3,750 food packets were provided in IRC Village and a similar quantity to poor individuals in VSS Nagar, Badagada and Goutam Nagar.

That apart, 450 food packets were distributed to the slum-dwellers and homeless in Jharpada and Niladri Vihar followed by 2,250 packets to poor families in IRC Village, Mancheswar, Satyanagar and Gadajit and Baridipa in Deras. Patnaik and his team also distributed 600 packets to visually-impaired persons near Satyanagar rail tracks and domestic workers in Nayapalli.

Umbrella Distribution to cops:-

The social organization started off by handing over 515 umbrellas to Commissionerate Police. The umbrellas were then distributed to police officers, traffic constables and volunteers deployed at various traffic joints in the city. This was followed by the distribution of 100 umbrellas to the Puri Police as well.    

Blood donation camp:-

To facilitate the availability of blood for Thalassemia and cancer patients, two blood donation camps were organized by following all government norms. The first one was conducted in collaboration with the Commissionerate Police at Reserve Police Office, Nayapalli and the second one at Simpleekare Clinic, Nayapalli where 30 and 25 units of blood were collected respectively.

Mask Distribution:-

Over 300 hand-stitched masks were distributed to postal department staffs who risked their lives to deliver parcels, letters and even cash during the lockdown.

Support to Amphan-affected people:-

Patnaik and his team distributed 645 dry food and biscuit packets along with tarpaulins to few slum-dwellers affected by Cyclone Amphan in Sijua. The tarpaulins were provided by Manavjyot public charitable trust.

Visor Distribution to cops and volunteers:-

500 protective visors were handed over to Commissionerate Police for direct distribution to police officers and traffic cops. Also, visors were distributed to quarantine centre volunteers in Bhubaneswar.  

‘There’s Nothing to Panic’-

The philanthropist said adhering to government guidelines is the need of the hour. “There is no need to panic, rather as responsible citizens, everyone has to patiently follow the safety and hygiene rules to keep the virus at bay,” he said.  

Plans Ahead-

The social organization will conduct a blood donation camp for Thalassemic patients next month. “Over 3,000 ready-to-eat food and biscuit packets provided by IMMT are available with us. We are just a call or text away, in case of any emergency or immediate help,” he assured.

Written By Subhojit Panda

Image Source: Google

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