At a time when much of the world has asserted great control over containing the spread of the coronavirus, with countries increasingly vaccinating its citizens, a different story is playing out in India, the world’s second-most populous nation.
For a week straight, India has reported more than 300,000 daily new infections, about half of all the cases across the globe, despite cutting down on testing in some states and underreporting deaths.
Hospitals have ran out of beds for new patients, and doctors are consistently pleading on social media, often tagging Prime Minister Narendra Modi, for essential medical supplies such as oxygen.
With several major industries, including film and sports, going about their lives pretending there is no crisis, entrepreneurs and startups have emerged as a rare beam of hope in recent days, springing to action to help the nation navigate its darkest hours.
It’s a refreshing change from last year, when thousands of Indian startups themselves were struggling to survive. And while some startups are still severely disrupted, offering a helping hand to the nation has become the priority for most.
Hundreds of startup entrepreneurs and venture capitalists, if not more, are spending much of their time trying to build software to find ways to make it easier for people to track new updates and make donations to foundations, and are exploring and funding ideas that have the potential to address some of the challenges surrounding the crisis.
Two organizations rising to the occasion include:
ACT Grants, which is run by nearly all active venture funds and PE firms, in addition to dozens of other volunteers. The initiative is the collective group’s continuing effort from last year.
ACT is a collective movement by India’s startup ecosystem & leaders.
We are now accepting domestic & international donations at https://t.co/akFgq8MMGO
These will go towards oxygen solutions, home healthcare & more. Join us in this fight. ACT now!
— ACT Grants (@actgrants) April 25, 2021
Zomato Feeding India: India’s largest food delivery startup is helping patients and hospitals with oxygen and other crucial supplies.
Zomato Feeding India, our not-for-profit has kickstarted the “Help Save My India” endeavour today in association with @delhivery to source oxygen concentrators and related supplies to help hospitals and families in need. pic.twitter.com/60kBYZMrrd
— Deepinder Goyal (@deepigoyal) April 25, 2021
Additional resources and efforts:
Time to Act is NOW 🇮🇳
Here is list of organisations doing incredible work in fighting second wave of Covid-19 in India. No contribution is enough, no amount is less, every bit matters!
Support efforts in fighting Covid-19, help India get through thishttps://t.co/YvyRpqrVNw
— pj (@BeingPractical) April 25, 2021
Global friends; you can help India remotely .
Please donate to one of these causes. Most accept foreign cards (and if not message me and I’ll give you my PayPal and do it for you)
+ Twitter – pls tag more
— Lizzie Chapman (@ChapmanLizzie) April 23, 2021
If you’ve been fortunate enough to do well this year, consider joining me and @VitalikButerin by donating at the addresses below.
— balajis.com (@balajis) April 25, 2021
*APPEAL* pls make this weekend a giveaway weekend for India covid causes. LOT of people looking for 1:1 help and folks like @vivekanandahr / @prakharkhanduja are collating those. If you prefer donating to orgs, see few below w/ link to their donation pages: h/t @ChapmanLizzie
— Hemant Mohapatra (@MohapatraHemant) April 24, 2021
Thank you India 🇮🇳
We have collected ₹1 crore & adding our ₹1 makes it ₹2 crore worth of oxygen concentrators.
We are upping it to ₹10 crore now !
Pls donate on : https://t.co/oBuURdSDYH .
I am sure we can make it possible and we will match ₹ to ₹ for all contribution https://t.co/T9Cl8TsUR9
— Vijay Shekhar Sharma (@vijayshekhar) April 26, 2021
We are glad to partner with @CRED_club and @kunalb11 and team in this initiative. With the help of our partners, we look forward to extending your contributions to many hospitals and care centers that are in need at this critical time. https://t.co/CvgE2N5DI7
— Milaap (@milaapdotorg) April 26, 2021
Devastated to see the worsening Covid crisis in India. Google & Googlers are providing Rs 135 Crore in funding to @GiveIndia, @UNICEF for medical supplies, orgs supporting high-risk communities, and grants to help spread critical information.https://t.co/OHJ79iEzZH
— Sundar Pichai (@sundarpichai) April 26, 2021
Amid a devastating rise of COVID cases in India, our thoughts are with the medical workers, our Apple family and everyone there who is fighting through this awful stage of the pandemic. Apple will be donating to support and relief efforts on the ground.
— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) April 26, 2021
I am heartbroken by the current situation in India. I’m grateful the U.S. government is mobilizing to help. Microsoft will continue to use its voice, resources, and technology to aid relief efforts, and support the purchase of critical oxygen concentration devices.
— Satya Nadella (@satyanadella) April 26, 2021
We are a group of entrepreneurs and professionals in Canada & US procuring O2 Concentrators and shipping to hospitals in India 🇮🇳
Pls donate & spread the word
You can e-transfer 🇨🇦 or PayPal 🇺🇸 to *give@indiaO2.org*
— Kanchan Kumar (@kanchankumar) April 26, 2021
We are creating an Oxygen concentrator bank which can be borrowed by needy and circulated from one patient to another.
Starting target is 10 numbers which will cost us 5 Lakhs.
1 done, 9 more to go. Please donate.
Donate as much as you can via UPI to ag.nishchay@oksbi
— Nishchay (@agNishchay) April 26, 2021