INDIA: COVID-19 Care Center launches through donor funding from Salesian Missions
Retreat-Don Bosco launches a new 100-bed COVID-19 Care Center with help from donor funding from Salesian Missions.
NEW ROCHELLE, NY (June 7, 2021) A new 100-bed COVID-19 Care Center started by Retreat-Don Bosco, located in Yercaud, Tamil Nadu, India, is being launched with the help of donor funding from Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. This new facility will help the local community because right now people have to travel for medical care. The 100-bed facility will be located in a government girls’ hostel that is being repurposed.
The center was set up based on a request from the people of Yercaud, and there is good collaboration between the local government and citizens. A local task force, coordinated by Retreat-Don Bosco Yercaud, is directly responsible for finding and training volunteers for the center and for fundraising efforts to sustain its activities.
The task force members include Dr. Thomson, a medical team, Retreat-Don Bosco and Yercaud Youth Volunteers. Volunteers are trained to handle issues related to COVID-19. At the center, there will also be a help desk with information about testing and vaccinations, positive case tracing, distribution of dry rations and cooked food, and counseling for positive cases.
“Salesian missionaries in India are working to mitigate the impact of the second wave of the COVID-19 virus that is devastating communities across the country,” said Father Gus Baek, director of Salesian Missions. “Salesians have expanded their efforts to reach thousands of families who desperately need help while helping to support local health care facilities. With India’s health care system and other social services straining under the stress, Salesians are finding new ways to be supportive and meet community needs.”
Salesian programs across India are primarily focused on education. Salesian primary and secondary education helps youth prepare for later technical, vocational or university study. Other programs help to support poor youth and their families by meeting the basic needs of shelter, proper nutrition and medical care.
Access to professional training and workforce development services is highly valued by youth in India. The country, which is home to 1.34 billion people (18 percent of the world’s population), will have overtaken China as the world’s most populous country by 2024, according to the World Economic Forum. While India has the world’s largest youth population, it has yet to capitalize on this, leaving some 30 percent of this population without employment, education or training.
India has the world’s fourth-largest economy but more than 22 percent of the country lives in poverty. About 31 percent of the world’s multidimensionally poor children live in India, according to a report by the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative. A multidimensionally poor child is one who lacks at least one-third of 10 indicators, grouped into three dimensions of poverty: health, education and standard of living.
Contact: [email protected]