As an organization that has been prioritizing hand hygiene as a life or death matter for the last 7 years, the team at Sundara feels an extra need to have a presence when crisis strikes in our own backyard. We want to brief you on what our team has been working on in the past week in the face of this world-wide crisis.
As cases of COVID-19 surge in India and the country starts a 21-day country-wide lockdown, our Sundar India team has had to close all of our workshops across the country, sending our employees home for their safety.
In the last week, Sundar India worked with Gabriel Project Mumbai to design a public health campaign to stem the spread of COVID-19 using preventative measures such as proper hand hygiene.
Our focus is Thane, a suburb outside of Mumbai, where over 200,000 people live in urban slums without proper medical care. Residents of this area are truly some of the most vulnerable in the world. Their living conditions and lack of resources would make social distancing and self quarantining impossible- and practices like hand washing all the more critical.
Sundar India has already donated tens of thousands of bars of soap to the community and is creating banners and pamphlets in Hindi to educate children and their families on critical hand washing and hygiene practices. Gabriel Project Mumbai has opened the only community health center in this area, and is increasing its operating hours and staff presence to reach as many people as possible while introducing infrared non-contact thermometers to monitor the temperatures of those who are seeking care.
We are dedicated to prioritizing the public health of the people we serve and we will keep you posted as this continues to evolve. If you feel moved to donate at this time, please click here to contribute whatever you can.
In New York City:
We are working with our soap partners to donate bar and liquid soap products and cleaning supplies to communities at high risk here in New York City, the domestic epicenter of this crisis. We have chosen to focus on those without proper housing living in shelters and families living at or below the federal poverty line.
Additionally, we are working with a warehouse in the Netherlands to ship thousands of hotel amenity products from across the European Union to our soap recycling centers in East Africa and South Africa.
Finally our board is leading an initiative to create educational videos on hand hygiene for teachers to distribute virtually, while we are in the new teach and work from home reality.
We promise to keep in communication with you throughout this unprecedented time. If you feel an acute need in your community or a way we might be able to help you or someone you know, please send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are in this together.