Offering COVID-19 assistance to India is necessary


Governor Tom Wolf | Flickr

Angelica Tejada, Opinions Editor

Currently, India is battling one of the world’s worst COVID-19 outbreaks. With hospitals that are overpacked and vital resources like medicine, oxygen and personal protective equipment running out, developed countries like the United States should provide more assistance along with individuals and businesses.

“Crematories are so full of bodies, it’s as if a war just happened. Fires burn around the clock. Many places are holding mass cremations, dozens at a time, and at night, in certain areas of New Delhi, the sky glows,” The New York Times’ New Delhi bureau chief Jeffrey Gettleman reported on India’s current state.

As of May 2, India has a total reported number of more than 19.5 million COVID-19 cases and 215,542 deaths. Its COVID-19 vaccination rate is low, with just almost 2% of the population fully vaccinated.

While India endures soaring cases of COVID-19, other countries cannot turn a blind eye, because the pandemic has left its mark everywhere and it will continue to do so until global efforts are made to help the most vulnerable.

“The virus doesn’t respect borders, or nationalities, or age, or sex or religion,” Dr. Soumya Swaminathan, the World Health Organization’s chief scientist, said to BBC News. “And what’s playing out in India now unfortunately has been played out in other countries.”

Simply put, the COVID-19 situation in India inevitably affects countries all around the world. Even with travel restrictions, the virus can spread and variants can evolve, making the fight against the spread of COVID-19 a more difficult one to win.

While developed countries like the United States are easing COVID-19 restrictions and have had successful vaccine roll-outs, globally the pandemic is far from vanishing. Thousands upon thousands of families are losing their loved ones and suffering economically to get the resources they need to live.

It is worth mentioning that the United States has made efforts to help India under President Joe Biden, so America not turned a blind eye to the situation completely.

“The first of several emergency COVID-19 relief shipments from the United States has arrived in India! Building on over 70 years of cooperation, the United States stands with India as we fight the COVID-19 pandemic together. #USIndiaDosti,” the U.S. Embassy in India tweeted on April 29.

Yet, the efforts aren’t enough to make a difference and India is still facing a shortage of life-dependent resources. This is why a larger effort must come from individuals and businesses alike.

Multiple humanitarian organizations have offered aid to India during this dire situation and have outlined ways for everyone to get involved.

The Cooperative for Assistance and Relief Everywhere, or CARE, is an international humanitarian agency that is focused on fighting global poverty and its India chapter has been providing on-the-ground assistance to those in need.

“The unabated spread of COVID-19 has placed immense strain on organizations and communities dealing with this humanitarian crisis,” CARE India said, according to ABC News. “Marginalized communities face the greatest risk since they are already struggling to meet their daily needs. We at CARE know that the poor communities, as well as women and girls, are at highest risk.”

Sewa International, a nonprofit organization, has launched its “Help India Defeat COVID-19 campaign,” which is set to raise funds to ensure that medical equipment is shipped to hospitals in India. The New York Times has also created a full list of ways to help India.

Overall, those who are able should lend a helping hand to further help to stop COVID-19 from devastating more lives.