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Care of the Elderly from Vulnerable Rural Communities during COVID 19

Venue: Shanti Ashram
Date: 11th November 2020

Care of the Elderly from Vulnerable Rural Communities during COVID 19

Community Centered
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In India the nation-wide lockdown started at the stroke of the midnight hour on 25th March, 2019.
Millions have a new situation where they are not only at home but confined mostly indoors, their daily association with fellow children, adults and elders disrupted and they watch over each other with heightened anxiety. The lives of vulnerable children, elders and their families have today the compounded burden of deprivation, disease and physical isolation. As the Nobel Laureate Abhijit Banerjee said in an interview, ‘the poor are not just losing their livelihoods; they are also probably at a potential risk of losing their health and their lives’.

While the situation is still dynamic, evidence based policy, physical isolation, disruption of the transmission and care of the most vulnerable are the continuing the goals of these national public health measures. Government and people’s support for both the measures have been positive.

  • •The situation is becoming more intense and prolonged, many have lost jobs, family incomes have significantly diminished so we are taking this practical action to care for our elders in our service villages.
  • •This community based response of essential supplies for elder women from the Ashram’s Service Villages will support the already pre-identified 80 vulnerable elder women and bring them food bank supplies, support to maintain personal hygiene and protection.
  • •Shanti Ashram’s International Center for Child and Public Health (ICPH) has been organizing monthly ‘support group’ meets to serve between 80-100 vulnerable elder women from our service villages for the past 8 years.

According to Population Census 2011 there are nearly 104 million elderly persons (aged 60 years or above) in India;53 million females and 51 million males. There is an urgent need to care for them during the COVID 19 Pandemic. This especially because extended geriatric care and essential services has been disrupted during the Pandemic. We are stepping up our efforts again during COVID 19!

During COVID 19 Pandemic we have cared for a cohort of our ‘Patti’s’
We put together a special COVID 19 relief package for the elders with

  • •Nutritional Supplement: Dry ration (complementing the PDS supplies of rice and sugar) from the Food bank of Shanti Ashram.
  • •Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) : Mask and Soap
  • •Essential medicines

This was possible with your help.