You have been seeing and hearing horrific stories of what is happening in our country. I sincerely hope that you have not experienced the loss that we have felt in the Parikrma family of seeing our dear ones give up the fight to live without oxygen and ventilator and some without any access to even basic medicine.
About two weeks ago, many of the Parikrma staff tested Covid positive including my husband and I. While we were confined to our homes taking the medicines prescribed by the doctor, the realization that we are so fortunate reverberated around me. Although age was against me, I was fortunate to have taken the first jab of the vaccine. That surely helped me and that is going to help the rest of the people around us to finally get rid of the virus. Everyone needs to protect themselves of course through the safety protocols, but most importantly with the vaccine, whichever it may be Covaxin, Covishield or Sputnik.
We hear of long lines for the vaccine and how it is impossible to get a slot for several months. The parents of the Parikrma children are waiting for the free vaccine from the government, finding it difficult to use the technology to book themselves and the primary health centres are complaining of limited stock. And the horror of it all is that while the administration gets their act together, many people are going to die. Over the last 22 years that I have been working with the poor I have seen that they are always the last in the line for benefits and the first ones to die. And they are wept only by their bewildered hapless immediate family and do not account for in any of the statistics that get rolled out.
Parikrma has decided to buy vaccines from private parties and the government (as and when possible) and start a vaccination drive. We want to convert our schools as vaccination camps, invite the Parikrma alumni that is in the medical field to volunteer with us, partner with experienced public health experts and start vaccinating the poor totally free. We want to give both the doses to 20,000 people in the slums.
We have access to Sputnik vaccines that cost Rs 750 per vaccine with additional Rs 150 as admin costs (to transport the vaccines from Chennai, set up the camps and have health officials administer the jabs organized by our Health partners). So it will cost us Rs 1800 per person.
You may ask, why is it that we are buying the vaccines when the government has promised it free to the poor? The answer is simple. Time is a very important factor here. If we do not get into the act quickly, lives will be lost. Government is not giving guarantees of any kind and we need guarantees to save lives. I put a simple test before taking any decision. What would I do to protect my daughter? I would buy the vaccine and give her the ammunition to fight. Our children’s parents too deserve the same. They cannot afford to buy the vaccines and cannot afford to wait either. So, let us buy it for them and protect them as if they were members of our immediate family. We have been working with them the last 18 years and have worked through many problems in the past. Let us to do it again.
I know you are a caring person and want to save lives as desperately as we want to. Help us by contributing what you can to save thousands of lives. I shall be counting on you.
Please donate to the links below. Please let us do it together. Thank You.