“We have kept politics aside and just want to help people…” says Indian Youth Congress (IYC) leader BV Srinivas, who helped thousands of migrants reach home last year during the lockdown, and is now part of a nationwide IYC campaign to assist families in arranging medicines, hospital beds and even plasma donors.
From arranging a Remdevisir injection to getting a hospital bed for a Covid-19 patient, Srinivas and a team of 1,000 volunteers in every state have been helping people who approach them since March.
“This year on March 1, Rahul ji visited Delhi for a meeting during which he discussed that the cases may go up in the coming days. So it was then decided to start #SOSIYC and from March 27, we have been actively helping the people who are running from pillar to post in need of plasma, bed or any other support,” he said.
The volunteer teams were formed and were asked to coordinate with Covid-19 patients and their attendants on a regular basis.
Most of the requirement comprises plasma and hospital admissions across the country. The team has received over 50,000 requests in the last 10 days and as the number of calls and messages increased, they gradually shifted focus to social media. “These volunteers are actively monitoring the requests coming on social networking websites… However, there are many times when we are not able to help the patients but in most cases, we try to help those in need,” said Srinivas.
IYC volunteers keep an eye on bed availability to reach out to patients as needed. “We are not keeping a count of the people we are helping. Of the total requests we receive, we are able to update about it on social media in only 20 per cent cases and the rest are managed without promoting it on the social network,” said Srinivas.
“We are talking to the hospitals and coordinating with the administration to donate Remdevisir since it was not available in the local market. We speak to the health officers who can help the patient in getting the medicine… The focus is to cater to the severe cases at the earliest,” he said.
The leader has now started an online campaign for plasma donation in which the team of volunteers are assisting people to get registered on the website. Once a person registers, the volunteers reach out to the person concerned and facilitate the donation process. “Initially, many people were scared… In the beginning, we had requested around 10,000 people all over the country to donate plasma out of which 8,000 had refused to donate their plasma.”