Covid India: Shanta Foundation UK platform raises funds for Gujarat hospital

Covid India: Shanta Foundation UK platform raises funds for Gujarat hospital

A UK-based philanthropist traces an inspirational Global Indian fundraising journey in support of a small hospital in the western Indian state of Gujarat.

We have recently seen many organisations and individuals collecting funds to support our people in India. We feel for them, knowing it’s a mammoth task for all world government fighting Covid. The second surge of the deadly Covid-19 pandemic to hit India had made a desperate situation worse.

It is right for us to want to help India in its time of crisis but the public anxiety of the donors is: will my funds get there, in time and used for those at the bottom of the pyramid who need it most.

Mr M.V. Patel, along with his two other Trustees, Mr Pushyantbhai and Yogendrabhai Patel, launched their appeal and collections from friends on behalf of a UK-registered charity for Shree Krishna Hospital based at Karamsad in Gujarat.

The 950-bed hospital has been proving services free of cost and is a worthy candidate. They are under pressure to increase their resources. Desperately needing ventilators, personal protection gowns, masks, equipment to increase the facilities and need extra capacity to treat more Covid patients. The not-for-profit hospital has agreed to receive the total amount without taking any administration charges.

The Trustees approached brothers and businessmen, Vijay and Bhiku Patel, who have agreed to match donations received up to £1 million through the Shanta Foundation. An online platform has been launched and total funds raised are already over £250,000 of the £500,000 target.

Gujarat has recorded about 10,000 daily new Covid cases. The state’s medical system has been stretched to the limit. Anand district, where the hospital is located, has seen a continuous rise in cases since April. Shree Krishna Hospital does not have any beds vacant, however, the hospital has said it has done its best not to turn away critical Covid patients. The funds will be used for the Waymade Critical Care Unit in support of the ICU and high dependency units, acquiring oxygen generators, 3-ply masks and PPE kits for the staff and cares.

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Amul dairy has also come forward to provide an oxygen plant capable of producing 20,000 litres per hour of oxygen and Chairman of Amul Shree, Ramsinh Parmar, has inaugurated it in the last few weeks.

The funds started with a modest collection of £12 in the first 24hrs with a target of £50,000 but since the online appeal was launched with the Shanta Foundation, the total has increased exponentially.

iGlobal readers are welcome to join the efforts to save lives via Shanta Foundation.

I hope others find this inspiring and come forward to relieve death and suffering.

by Sharad Parikh

Sharad Parikh is a charity worker and past Chair of the National Congress of Gujarati Organisations UK.

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