Solidarity with the COVID-19 affected: Tribal Foundation (Nagercoil) – Tamil Nadu

Nagercoil, 7 November 2020

With the total lockdown with zero transportation in Kanyakumari, at the southern tip of India, all sectors of people had to face the new challenges in life as securing food , medicines and other essentials. There was exemption to the essentials only for food, medicines while the prices soared. As the pandemic spread as wildfire, people were highly scared to venture out of homes.

The worst affected were the indigenous people residing in the deep jungles and forests without any proper communication with the people in other areas. Tribal Foundation rose to the occasion and ventured in providing food items to some of the tribal Settlements.

Davidson Sargunam, the managing Trustee contacted the local Member of Parliament Vasantha Kumar to distribute some food items. He sponsored some essential materials, personally went to the tribal areas and distributed them. Sadly he succumbed to the virus within a month.

Illustrated story books were distributed to the indigenous children in hilly areas where schools had closed indefinitely and students receive no regular lessons. This puts them under severe stress being unable to participate in online classes for want of electricity. Moreover they cannot afford the android mobile phones used for this purpose in other regions.

Vegetables were distributed to the indigenous people, health workers and needy persons with essential items as sugar, cooking oil, eatables for children, wheat flour, rice, condiments, spices to indigenous people and needy people in poor economic as cab drivers, daily labourers and house maids.

Face masks were distributed to indigenous people and others in need.

PPE kits were given to some presbyters as they have to bury the corona virus infected deceased persons in the cemetery. PPE kits were donated to a team of paramedical staff, working in the corona ward and in the quarantine ward.

Source: report and photos courtesy Davidson Sargunam, 7 November 2020.

Tip: health and the nutritional value of indigenous grains, seeds and millets: “The tribal food basket has always been ­diverse and nutritious” >>

Image © PARI People’s Archive of Rural India reporting on Covid-19 >>
Related posts: how India’s tribal communities cope with the pandemic >>

Covering the human cost of Covid-19
The nationwide Covid-19 lockdown that started on March 25 [2020] has triggered distress for millions of ordinary Indians – stranded migrant workers, farmers, sugarcane cutters, Adivasis, Dalits, sanitation workers, construction labourers, cancer patients staying on city pavements, brick kiln labourers, pastoral nomads, and others. While many are on the brink with no work, income or food, several continue to work amid extremely hazardous conditions | Read about them in these PARI reports from across the country >>

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