India: Direct Relief's programme activities update Oct 2005
Shipment Number: 4510/4656
Shipment Date: 10/11/2005
One of the tsunami-related reconstruction projects that Direct Relief funded in India was in collaboration with Bharatiya Jain Sanghatana (BJS), a charitable Indian organization headquartered in Pune, Maharashtra. Founded by Mr. Shantilal Muttha, a successful businessman who made millions in the construction and technology industries, its goal is to improve socioeconomic progress in India. Over the past 20 years, BJS has focused its efforts on making improvements in education, providing vocational training, conducting medical and surgical camps, and providing immediate and long-term assistance to disaster-affected communities. In response to the tsunami, BJS focused its early relief efforts on providing food and shelter for six relief camps located in Tamil Nadu. After evaluating the construction needs in tsunami-affected regions, BJS decided to work on rebuilding schools and healthcare facilities in the heavily-damaged Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
The Andaman and Nicobar Islands are a chain of 572 islands stretching over 500 miles in the Indian Ocean. The islands, especially the Nicobar Islands which are comprised of a number of the southern archipelagos, were hit hard by the tsunami due their close proximity to the earthquake epicenter. Great Nicobar, the southern-most island, is located less than 100 miles from the epicenter.
Direct Relief provided the funding for the construction of 34 primary care centers and sub-centers, all replacing smaller facilities that had been completely destroyed by the tsunami. In addition to providing the funding for reconstruction, Direct Relief provided medical goods to help equip the newly built centers and sub-centers. These shipments, two of the four Direct Relief donations being provided to the Directorate of Health for the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, consisted of 40 exam tables. Midmark Corporation made this shipment possible.
Recipient: Andaman and Nicobar
Shipment Number: 4511/4657
Shipment Date: 10/11/2005
Tsunami relief efforts on the Andaman and Nicobar Islands have been slow due to lack of road infrastructure, lack of cargo space, poor medical infrastructure, and lengthy ferry journeys required for delivery of supplies. Many of the islands have sunk between one and two meters, leaving homes and coconut plantations under water.
In collaboration with the Indian-based NGO Bharatiya Jain Sanghatana, Direct Relief funded the reconstruction of 34 primary care centers and sub-centers to replace the ones that were completely destroyed by the tsunami. The sub-centers will be expanded in size in order to accommodate the living quarters for a trained nurse/midwife. For the first time, a health provider will be available full time to care for and treat islanders who may otherwise have no access to medical services. A physician, traveling by boat or helicopter, will also visit each sub-center on a weekly basis. The islands on which all of the facilities are being built are very remote and difficult to reach with construction materials and equipment, making them an extremely challenging place to rebuild. Upon completion, the centers will be handed over to the Andaman and Nicobar Administration which will be responsible for the administration of the facilities. These two shipments, which consisted of a large range of pharmaceuticals, nutritional products, medical supplies, and diagnostic equipment, will help to stock and equip the new centers. We would like to thank GlaxoSmithKline, Hospira, Inc., and Miltex Instrument Company.