Tag Archives: #covidindia

Abha Sharma and her family

Bereaved Mother of Bay Area Resident Unable to Visit the US

A longtime resident of the Bay Area, Abha Sharma suffered devastating losses from the Delta variant in India over the past two months. Sharma’s father and 40-year-old younger brother both succumbed to COVID 19. Her only surviving relative in India, her mother, Prabha Rawat, who was battling COVID, is now stuck there in a recovery hospital.

Mrs. Rawat is not aware of the deaths of her husband and son. Besides COVID, she has multiple medical conditions that need constant medical attention. The deaths of her husband and son have been withheld from her since she may not withstand the news of these losses on her own. The fear is that she may also pass away if she is not nursed back to health by her surviving family.

Sharma and her other brother, who are both in the USA, are unable to secure a visa to bring their mother here due to the freeze on the B1/B2 visas. Her brother is a US Citizen and she is a green cardholder. They are desperate to bring their mother here because she has no support in India.  

The only other option is for Sharma to move to India indefinitely. That will be a huge challenge since she has two children in high school in the Bay Area. 

The only hope right now is for the US State Department to issue humanitarian parole or an emergency visa issued based on these circumstances. But, embassy appointment dates are not available. Sharma and her brother are hoping that the State Department could issue their mom a visa to travel.

To this end, Sharma contacted many Congressmen/Congresswomen and Senators in many states including California Congresswoman Anna Eshoo’s office. They tried contacting the US embassy in New Delhi but the US embassy did not consider the circumstances exigent enough.

A visa application is filed but no appointments are available at the US Consulate in New Delhi. Abha has been diligently calling the US consulate every day for a month and a half for an appointment.

At this point, Abha’s situation appears to be dire with no light at the end of the tunnel. 

Please sign this change.org petition appealing the State Department to provide a visa to Abha’s mom on humanitarian grounds:  http://chng.it/fWPbZtrLQX


Shailaja Venkatsubramanyan has taught information systems at San Jose State.  She volunteers with the Plant-Based Advocates of Los Gatos.  http://www.plantbasedadvocates.com/


 

Neanderthal DNA Present in South Asians is a Risk Factor For COVID-19

People of South Asian descent possess a set of genes inherited from Neanderthals that makes them more susceptible to hospitalization from COVID-19, according to a study published in Nature

While certain risk factors affect the severity of COVID-19 – such as age and presence of underlying health conditions – the study noted that many still contract a severe case of COVID-19 without these risk factors, implying the existence of other risk factors in our genetics. Hugo Zeberg and Svante Paabo, the study’s authors, found a core haplotype (a group of genes inherited from a single parent) that increases the risk of hospitalization for COVID-19 to occur at a 50 percent frequency in South Asian people. 

The same haplotype is almost absent in those of East Asian descent, occurs at only a 16 percent frequency in people from Europe, but occurs at a 63 percent frequency among Bangladeshi people in the United Kingdom, Zeberg and Paabo wrote. They said Bangladeshi people in the UK also have double the risk of dying from COVID-19 compared to the general population, indicating further disparities in healthcare that are compounded by the genetic predisposition identified in the study.  

Pie charts show the minor allele frequency at rs35044562. Frequency data were obtained from the 1000 Genomes Project. Map source data were obtained from OpenStreetMap. (Image from Nature Magazine)

The study comes as COVID-19 cases in India are on the rise and hospitals struggle to maintain the resources to deal with the onset of new cases. Despite being one of the world’s biggest producers of compressed oxygen, the country has dealt with a shortage of supplies due to delays in oxygen storage and production, which in turn exacerbated the COVID-19 crisis.

“With respect to the current pandemic, it is clear that gene flow from Neanderthals has tragic consequences,” Zeberg and Paabo wrote. 

The study states that the fact these genes have endured over the course of history to the present day indicates they must have been beneficial to human survival at some point in time.

“Thus, although this haplotype is detrimental for its carriers during the current pandemic, it may have been beneficial in earlier times in South Asia, perhaps by conferring protection against other pathogens, whereas it may have been eliminated in East Asia by negative selection,” the study states

However, Zeberg and Paabo found that the haplotype is notably absent in those of African descent because gene flow from Neanderthals into African populations at the time was “limited and probably indirect.”

“It is currently not known what feature in the Neanderthal-derived region confers risk for severe COVID-19 and whether the effects of any such feature are specific to SARS-CoV-2, to other coronaviruses, or to other pathogens,” they wrote. “Once the functional feature is elucidated, it may be possible to speculate about the susceptibility of Neanderthals to relevant pathogens.”

Cutting-edge research, like the one Zebery and Paabo conducted, is an important reminder that diversity in research and medicine provides a more comprehensive understanding of diverse populations and how to address their needs.


Isha Trivedi is a journalism student at George Washington University. She enjoys reading and listening to podcasts in her (limited) spare time. 


 

Book cover of "V For Vaccine'

V For Vaccine: South Asians Educate Early

One of the hottest ‘V’ words that has the entire world talking about them these days is vaccines. Either someone has recently taken them, is taking them, or is about to take them! Lately, young children have been observing adults around them—their parents, grandparents, aunts, and uncles—taking the all-important Covid-19 jab. Moreover, now in several countries, with vaccine trials for children underway, the book is a useful manual to help them understand what’s going on. 

Artist - Isha Nagar
Artist – Isha Nagar

V For Vaccine: A One-Shot Introduction to Vaccines! (HarperCollins, 2021) is a ready reckoner to tell children everything they need to know about vaccines. Through easy-to-understand language and colorful, quirky illustrations by Isha Nagar, the book explains the preventive nature of vaccines—how they teach one’s body to recognize and fight certain germs such as chicken pox or measles—and what makes them different from other medicines.

Originally from Lucknow, Nagar was born into a family of artists and writers. In 2010, she graduated from the National Institute of Fashion Technology, Delhi with a Graphic Design specialization. While working in the publishing industry, she discovered her love for illustrations and ventured into creating quirky, handmade illustrations. Based on the daily activities of Indians, it paved way for her own brand Tathya, which produced lifestyle products and designs. She has also illustrated for the Mini series by Nandini Nayar.

Much of the inputs for the book’s content come from Dr. Gagandeep Kang, a Professor of Microbiology at the Wellcome Trust Research Laboratory, Division of Gastrointestinal Sciences at the Christian Medical College, Vellore. Having worked on the development and use of vaccines for rotaviruses, cholera, and typhoid, she is the first woman working in India to be elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of London.  

“Vaccines are a clever way of teaching your body how to fight off germs that haven’t tried to attack you yet, so that the first time these germs try to make you feel sick, your immune system is already prepared!” In this way, the prose highlights the importance of vaccines by reminding us how so many diseases in the past have been eradicated through herd immunity. 

In simplified form, the book also introduces kids to concepts such as antigens as well as antibodies—“a protein shaped like a Y”—one of the most important elements of the immune system. The book also details the process of testing a vaccine in labs on humans and animals once it is created, and describes what the actual process of taking a vaccine entails: whether it hurts, how the body reacts to it and builds immunity, booster doses, and annual flu shots. 

A page from the book 'V for Vaccine'.
A page from the book ‘V for Vaccine’.

The book also lists other ways to stay healthy, including eating a balanced diet with lots of fruits and vegetables, getting exercise and staying active, following basic hygiene like washing hands before meals, sneezing or coughing into a tissue, wearing a mask, and practicing social distancing (particularly for Covid-19). Along the way, the book also offers some fun facts and trivia about the history of vaccines, informing that an English scientist, Edward Jenner, invented the first vaccine around 1796, using material from cowpox to give people immunity against smallpox. 

In all, this short and timely book is perfect to educate young ones about vaccines, and even includes a pull-out vaccine card at the end!


Neha Kirpal is a freelance writer based in Delhi. She is the author of Wanderlust for the Soul, an e-book collection of short stories based on travel in different parts of the world. 


 

Top: Raj & Anna Asava. Bottom: HungerMitao Founders, Taiwan Center Foundation of LA, and HTHF on a zoom call.

An Unexpected Union of NonProfits Raise COVID Funds: HungerMitao, Taiwan Center Foundation, & a Hindu Temple

In April 2021, the United States experienced a steady decline in the COVID-19 cases, resulting in portions of the economy opening up. However, for people in India, the worst had just begun due to the second wave of the pandemic. The new variant of concern doubled the number of infections and deaths in the nation of 1.3 billion in population, sparking a  humanitarian crisis due to the shortage of medical resources for critically ill patients, resulting in an alarming number of people losing their lives. 

What emerges from the crisis is a story of three entities that didn’t know each other who, out of their compassion and vision, collaboratively raised $50,000 to help their fellow human beings in India.

In response to this crisis, Dallas-based philanthropists and founders of the HungerMitao movement, Raj & Aradhana Asava, initiated a matching donation challenge on Facebook of $25,000 and raised $12,343. 

Concurrently, the Los Angeles-based Taiwan Center Foundation of Greater Los Angeles spearheaded a fundraiser in the Taiwan American community in LA, raising $11,620 from many generous donors, and sent their funds to Pasadena-based non-profit Hindu Temple and Heritage Foundation (HTHF) to arrange to send to India. 

The three entities combined fundraising efforts – Taiwan Center Foundation’s $11,620.00 and HTHF’s donation of $1,037, was added to the $12,343 raised by Raj & Aradhana Asava challenge on Facebook for a total of $25,000. This was matched by a donation of  $25,000 from Raj & Aradhana Asava – resulting in a final donation amount of $50,000. 

These funds will be sent to India through Indiaspora to help set up COVID-19 Care Centers. The 10 bed COVID-19 Care Center, for a period of three critical months, will provide over 120 patients care for seven days each; and 7,000 people will be benefitted through outpatient services and utilization of various logistical support. 

A true story of what humans can achieve when they put their hearts and minds together! 

In addition, responding to the same crisis in May, HTHF also raised $17,500 to send 2,000  oxygen concentrators and help set up an oxygen plant in India. 

For additional information or to donate, check out each organization:


Mohna Manihar is an artist and a marketing, publicity, and fundraising consultant. She uses her MBA and networking skills as a catalyst to help non-profits and newer artists grow.


 

Trinity Cares Foundation fight against COVID-19 in Jangamakote Village. (Creative Commons License 2.0)

Don’t Forget People Are Still Dying In India

It started in mid-March 2021, the many videos of grandparents hugging their kids post-vaccination in the US. Families reunited safely after a year or more of waiting to touch. Pictures of social interaction among vaccinated people started appearing on social media feeds. People sat outdoors in restaurants in the sun. The CDC guidance changed about masks for vaccinated people.  

I live in the NY area. Perhaps, we can go to Broadway shows again soon. Maybe, we can relegate to memory those days of heartbreaking pictures of daughters looking in through the windows of nursing homes to get a glimpse of their mothers through the glass and families trying to decide whether to have Thanksgiving dinners sitting as far apart as possible in different rooms.

I do like the current optimism in the US on COVID. But for some of us, the pandemic is far from over. As an immigrant from India, I wish American media covered more world news.

For me, the pandemic is still very much alive. When I check my WhatsApp in the morning, before the fog of sleep has cleared, there is news from India. It may be that again someone we knew has passed away from COVID. In Facebook groups, someone else is looking for oxygen. The lucky ones are waiting three hours in line for a vaccine, while others don’t know when they will get a dose at all. They don’t need beer, donuts, or million-dollar lottery prizes as incentives to get vaccinated. 

There is a raging pandemic going on in India and in major parts of the world. If you believe in the overarching value of human life, you ought to be worried. 

I have been living in the US for more than two decades. As an immigrant, my threshold for pain is different. Even in regular times in my community, only the lucky children get to physically run and hug their grandparents once a year on a trip to India. We are lucky if we get to attend weddings of close relatives or be present when nephews and nieces are born. Every time we leave home in India, we aren’t quite sure whether we will see the very old ever again. 

No, the pandemic hasn’t ended for me. 

My septuagenarian father in Kolkata, India, who is disoriented after losing his wife last year in August, and has been socially distancing in the pandemic for so long, can neither go to the bank to stand in line or go to the fish market like he used to. He still has not been able to return to a fully independent life of doing the things he used to do. He has been taking social distancing seriously and I just long to hug him after my mother’s passing.

My father sits in a room surrounded by buildings that block the sky on all sides. There is no place to take a walk safely without running into people, even though that number continues to decrease because of COVID-related deaths. One neighbor, who called before my mother’s shradh ceremony (which is similar to a funeral) to inform us that she couldn’t attend, passed away just a few days later from COVID.

I talk to my father on the phone every day and tell him that all this will be over soon without really knowing what to believe myself. So, I switch to a conversation about how things are looking up in New York – at least he is happy that I am safe. 

Cable news channels in the US constantly state that the pandemic is ending. Occasionally, there is some coverage of other countries on the chyron when some complex US political complication is being discussed animatedly on the main screen. While there was never very much coverage of world news through the pandemic, I had hoped that we would hear more about those that are passing, at least from here in the US.

I live in the US and have lived here for twenty years. I am hoping the pandemic ends here. I teach in a college in Manhattan. I’m fully vaccinated. I’m eager to see my students in person just like anyone else. I’m hoping everyone else will be vaccinated when I take the train to Penn Station from New Jersey in the Fall. I, too, am hoping to sit in a cafe and write. I’m glad I can bring in groceries, now, without disinfecting them obsessively. But even as I think of my life here, I’m aware of the suffering of people in other countries. That is not just because I’m an immigrant. It’s because even before I became an immigrant, I grew up with the consciousness of the world through world news in India. 

For the first year of the pandemic, my experience of the pandemic in the US and India was parallel. I was looking in through the glass at my ailing mother last year all through her 5 months of sickness in Kolkata. I couldn’t visit her during the first Indian lockdown and the first wave of COVID in India. The glass in my case was not a hospital ICU wall but a phone video screen. The video was often blurred. Sometimes, I thought she recognized me on the screen. Sometimes, I thought she only saw the phone. She lost speech and then we eventually lost her in August 2020 through indescribable hardship.

For those of us, who lost someone close in the COVID world, the post-COVID world, if and when it comes, will never be the same.

For months I have been planning on how to visit my father in India safely. I have planned various scenarios in my head through the spikes in COVID cases in the US and India, and through lockdowns, flight cancellations, planning local transportation in India, COVID tests, seat availability, vaccination – tracking every little large and small last-mile problem through my mind’s eye. 

Yet, I have only ended up reassuring my father in India over the phone that he will go to the fish market soon, that he will be able to stand in line at the bank soon, that it will be safe for him to walk on the teeming Kolkata streets soon. My visit almost worked out when I completed my second dose of the vaccine in the US, but that’s when the deadly second wave hit India in April. My travel plans are on hold again.

World news should matter. Worldwide deaths should matter. Worldwide deaths should matter and not just because a virus mutating in the developing world can put the developed world in jeopardy. 

Death should matter just because we value human life.


Madhura Bandyopadhyay is a Doctoral Lecturer in the English Department at John Jay College, City University of New York (CUNY) in Manhattan, New York. She grew up in Kolkata, India and has lived in Florida, California, and Singapore. She lives in New Jersey now. Apart from being a teacher and scholar of writing, she blogs in her spare time just for fun on her blog at bottledworder.com 


 

Left to right: Kaveri Lalchand, India Mask Project, Siddharth Ramalingam

#MaskPodu: Bay Area High Schooler Joins Forces With Mask India Project

As COVID-19 makes its way down to the southern parts of India, there has been a silver lining. We have seen a surge of humanity that is lending a helping hand to India in this time of crisis.

One such initiative is by a 14-year-old school student Siddharth Ramalingam. He started The Bay Area Mask Care Project last year where he would make and sell cloth masks to raise funds for COVID relief.

“Bay Area Mask Care was formed to give back to the community in several ways during the pandemic. The COVID situation in India drove me to explore avenues to contribute to the Indian community where my close family and friends currently live,” says Ramalingam.

Parallelly in India, after the lockdown last year, when all businesses had to shut, Chennai-based designer Kaveri Lalchand had an idea to start making masks which had become mandatory.

“As we were told we need to wear masks all the time as the simplest and most effective way to protect ourselves, we started making masks. And one year down the line we need to be protected now more than ever. We decided to focus on the welfare of the country and the health and safety of our employees, friends and family, and the community at large. Our masks have been hugely popular, and this was one way we could think of to give back to the community,” says Lalchand.

So, she started The Mask India Project that manufactures and distributes masks free of cost. Kaveri and The Mask India Project have joined hands with the Bay Area Mask Care Project (USA) and with Chennai Volunteers and the #MaskPodu movements to give away thousands of masks to people of Chennai. Masks are also being distributed through the Suyam Charitable Trust to children in rural areas of Tamil Nadu.

When Ramalingam heard about this project, he stepped up to help raise funds for relief work in India by reaching out to his network of people in the USA. “I have always been impressed with Ms. Kaveri Lalchand’s contribution to society. When I heard about ‘The Mask India Project’, I decided that partnering with her would be the best way for me to serve the Indian community. I am excited and honored to be part of this initiative,” says Ramalingam.

The lockdown has also affected businesses and daily wage earners. Through this initiative, we have been able to provide eight tailors with machines to work from home. As a brand, we supply all the materials used in the mask free of cost fabrics, elastic, and threads. The tailors are paid for every mask they stitch. They have done a fantastic job with the uninterrupted supply,” says Lalchand.

The masks that are distributed as part of this project are 3-layer, reusable cloth masks. The top layer is linen and the inner two layers are cotton. “The mask is printed with our logo – the map of India with a heart at its center. The heart is to honor the memory of all those who have lost their lives due to COVID-19,” says Lalchand.

The Mask India Project also works with Chennai Volunteers, a voluntary organization started by Rinku Mecheri, that manages welfare and relief work in fields like gender equality, disaster relief, and uplifting the less fortunate. Lalchand has tied up with the Chennai Volunteers to distribute our masks to the people of Chennai.

The #MaskPodu movement was created to bring about awareness about the importance of wearing a mask and wearing it right (not under your nose or on your chin!) This was created by two responsible citizens of Chennai, Kishore Manohar, and Siddarth Ganeriwala. They have spread the message using a very catchy tune that has been written by Aravind-Shankar the musician who made the famous Chennai Super Kings song “Whistle Podu.

“We will be giving our masks to them for distribution amongst the people of Chennai. The song has also been made into Kannada and Malayalam with the Hindi version underway,” says Lalchand.

As the predicted third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic is expected to affect children the most, the Suyam Charitable Trust decided to raise money to provide masks to children across districts of Tamil Nadu. With vaccinations for children still a little further away, masking up is the only proven method to protect oneself.

This is also why Maya (16) and Eka (13) Kachibhatla, a sister and brother duo from Chennai wanted to contribute towards COVID relief in a more meaningful way and associated with Lalchand and her team. They started to raise an amount of Rs 30000 (USD 410), which they could surpass and now The Mask India Project is providing them and the Suyam trust with 7000 children’s masks. And to make the masks more fun, the masks are being printed with a heart or a star or a design of an elephant or some other cute design.

Since its inception, the team has started seeing a sustained increase in the demand for masks. “We have now committed 1000 masks for an entire village in Haryana. We have also tied up with the Apollo Shine Foundation to distribute masks to students from disadvantaged backgrounds and we hope to help more,” concludes Lalchand.

If you want to help contact the team on their Facebook page.


Bindu Gopal Rao is a freelance writer and photographer from Bangalore who likes taking the offbeat path when traveling. Birding and environment are her favorites and she documents her work on www.bindugopalrao.com.


 

Dr. Nagalli Answers All Your Questions About The Black Fungus Associated With COVID-19

More than 3.5 million people have died worldwide from COVID-19 infection and the numbers are only rising despite more than a year into this public health emergency, specifically in developing countries.

Although the clinical manifestations of this disease are well-established the long-term consequences are still evolving and are being studied. Infection with ‘Black’ fungus is one such complication that is increasingly seen in patients with COVID-19 infection, particularly in India and other Asian countries. ‘Black’ fungal infection, known as Mucormycosis or Zygomycosis in medical terminology, is an opportunistic infection. It is labeled as ‘black’ due to the physical appearance of dead tissue caused by this fungal infection.

As a physician, some of the common questions that I frequently encounter from my patients, family, and friends are on ‘Black’ fungus. Here, I attempt to answer the questions:

How is black fungus infection acquired?

The most common causative organisms of this illness belong to genera Rhizopus, Mucor, and Rhizomucor. They are found ubiquitously and are commonly acquired through the inhalation of spores. This is typically seen in patients with severe immunocompromised states. 

Who is likely to get black fungus/Mucormycosis?

Mucormycosis is not seen in all patients diagnosed with COVID-19 infection. But some of the underlying comorbidities can make patients more susceptible to acquire this infection. Patients with uncontrolled Diabetes Mellitus, cancers (particularly blood cancers), organ transplants, and those on immunosuppressive therapy are at increased risk of getting this fungal infection.

Why is black fungus increasingly seen in COVID-19 patients?

The relationship of COVID-19 infection with Mucormycosis is still unclear. But it is known that the fungi causing this infection thrive well in high glucose and acidic environments. It is important to remember that steroids, which are commonly prescribed in the treatment of COVID-19 pneumonia, increase patient blood sugar levels and suppress one’s immunity. This can put him/her at risk of acquiring Mucormycosis.

What symptoms to watch for?

Patients at risk should watch for symptoms such as nasal discharge often with fevers, facial pain, headaches, orbital pain or swelling, decreased / loss of vision, or double vision. Blood in cough or vomitus may also be seen. The development of any of these symptoms should prompt immediate evaluation by a physician.

Is there any treatment for Mucormycosis?

The fungi causing Mucormycosis spread rapidly and invade blood vessels resulting in the death of infected tissues. Patients diagnosed with Mucormycosis typically require hospitalization and initiation of antifungal therapy as soon as possible. This illness has a risk of significant morbidity and mortality. Patients require urgent surgical debridement to remove the dead and necrotic tissues. Hence consultations with ENT and or a maxillofacial surgeon are required. Ophthalmology consultation is also required if orbits are involved. 

What can be done to prevent this fungal infection?

Patients who are on chronic immunosuppressive therapy should consult physicians before initiating any new medications. Indiscriminate use of steroids, such as using steroids for patients with mild COVID-19 infection, should be avoided. Over-the-counter dispensing of steroids should be banned and strictly enforced by pharmacists. Patients who require steroids should have their blood sugars monitored and sugars need to be corrected, typically with insulin injections. In short, controlling blood sugars well mitigates the risk of Mucormycosis.


Dr. Shivaraj Nagalli is a board-certified Internal Medicine physician and a fellow of the American College of Physicians. He practices Hospital Medicine at the Shelby Baptist Medical Center in Alabaster, Alabama. 


 

India Still Needs You: Fremont High Schooler Helps India Breathe

India is in one of the largest humanitarian crises in history. The devastating headlines and heartbreaking pictures show that millions are suffering. People are dying on the street, frantically searching for hospitals and oxygen for their loved ones’. Crematoriums are overflowing with bodies. Over 500 doctors have sacrificed their lives to save others. My own grandfather, a dedicated orthopedic surgeon, succumbed to the virus treating his patients.

My grandfather treating patients days before he contracted the virus. (Image provided by Author)
My grandfather treating patients days before he contracted the virus. (Image provided by Author)

The entire healthcare system is collapsing. I am horrified at the tragic situation relayed by family members who are frontline professionals. I hear stories of casualties and devastation from my aunt  (who is a covid warrior awardee and treats hundreds of covid patients on a daily basis) and uncle (who does covid-related black fungus surgeries). My own grand-uncle passed away from the virus recently.

The second wave of COVID has been catastrophic and the current infrastructure is ill-equipped to handle the recent surge in cases. As of now, India has recorded 28.1 million official cases with over 330,000 deaths. These are only the cases that have been reported– the New York Times accounts for gross underreporting and estimates 540 million real cases. Every 5 minutes, someone dies because of COVID, unable to find oxygen gasping for breath.

To help those affected by the COVID crisis, we have partnered with Give India, the largest on-the-ground organization providing urgent relief resources. So far I’ve raised $26,600 to provide critical aid to those suffering in India.

The funds will be used for:

  • Oxygen. Hospitals’ oxygen demand is as high as 700% in some areas. Donations are being used to manufacture oxygen generators, ventilators, and cylinders.
  • Testing and Vaccination sites. Hospitals are erecting sites near hotspots such as airports to minimize the spread and obtain an accurate count of cases.
  • Setting up COVID Care Centers. Sick patients are turned away from overcrowded hospitals, forced to treat themselves without proper equipment. Funds are used to set up COVID Care and Isolation centers, fully equipped with quality care services to treat patients. 
  • Food. The World Bank has found that poverty in India has doubled during COVID, as families struggle to pay for treatment. Your donation will be used to provide meals and ration kits to communities struggling to make ends meet. Just $6 is enough to provide an entire week’s worth of rations for a family.

If you are in India:

  •     Please stay isolated and masked up. Follow all COVID protocols to protect others.

  •     Donate blood plasma if possible

  •     Get vaccinated immediately

  •     Do not purchase or sell overpriced medical supplies

  •     Return your empty oxygen cylinder so it can be refilled for someone else

  •     Help your family with continually checking up on family and their symptoms

  •     Report orphaned children to helplines, distribute meals to the homeless, feed stray animals

  •     Practice good hygiene and spread awareness

 If you are outside of India:

  •     DONATE. Know that anything that you give can save someone’s life: Donate Here

  •     Share resources on beds, medicines, plasma

  •     Raise awareness on recovery at home

  •     Volunteer at Covid Centers

  •     Help orphaned children get protection, sponsor their education

  •     Help organizations provide oxygen cylinders and concentrators

  •     Check on family & friends

We urge you to donate during this time of need. The suffering will not end unless we make the change. Any and every amount helps! I encourage you to join this COVID support group to interact with others and receive updates and help on your recovery journey: https://www.facebook.com/groups/covidrecoveryjourney/


Yuvraj Walia is a 9th grader at Mission San Jose High School. He is passionate about medicine and hopes to make a difference and save lives during the COVID crisis with this fundraiser.


Every 5 minutes, someone dies because of COVID in India, usually on the street, unable to find oxygen. Fremont High Schooler, Yuvraj Walia has partnered with GiveIndia to provide resources! Donate today @GiveIndia #covidinindia #covid19 #covidindia #covidinfo #indiacurrents