India – Vast, articulated Salesian commitment in fight against Covid-19

25 May 2021

(ANS - New Delhi) - In the face of the new, violent wave of Covid-19 that is affecting all of India and the Indian Church within it - in the last few weeks alone 168 Catholic priests and 116 nuns have lost their lives - the Family Salesian multiplies her efforts and commitments in favor of the most needy.

In the Chennai Province (INM), the Salesian school of Egmore, with the contribution of the Past Pupils of the institute and other institutions, has set up a Covid-19 Care Center (CCC) with 104 beds and oxygen concentrators, to meet the ever-growing demand for beds and oxygen in the city. Furthermore, the "Don Bosco Relief Service" (DBRS), under the aegis of "SURABI", the Provincial Planning and Development Office, and in collaboration with the "Don Bosco" work of Vazhikatti, Permabur, has supported hundreds of needy people with an emergency kit that includes rice, legumes, oil, spices, soaps, vitamins, medicines and a thermometer. The beneficiaries are 500 street vendors in Chennai, and about a hundred other marginalized people from around the city.

In Bangalore, another CCC, with 25 beds, was blessed and opened on May 19th by the Redemptorist Fathers. "BREADS", the Planning and Development Office of the Salesian Province of Bangalore (INK), is supporting the CCC with all consumables and oxygen concentrators, as well as with food for patients, doctors, staff and volunteers.

In Mumbai, the Provincial Planning and Development Office, the "Don Bosco Development Society" (DBDS), thanks to a collaboration with the company "AXA Business", reached another 200 poor and needy families in Pune and Chinchwad with rescue packages of foodstuffs, hygiene kits and toilet articles. This was funded by Services. In total, over the past year, DBDS has reached and served over 750,000 people.

In Calcutta, in addition to the consultancy and medical assistance service for the needy started at the “Nitika Don Bosco”, another Salesian assistance center was inaugurated on Saturday 22 May at the “Don Bosco School” in Park Circus. Several Indian media and television stations have also taken an interest in this initiative. Furthermore, the Salesian Cooperators of the Unit of the "Kristu Jyoti College" are financially supporting the Salesian initiatives, while Fr Gilbert Choondal, Provincial Delegate for Youth Ministry, Evangelization and Catechesis, has given life to Eucharistic adoration to implore divine help in this difficult situation.

In Chandigarh, New Delhi Province, the Salesians collaborated to strengthen the government's health infrastructure, supporting 11 hospitals with personal protective equipment, hand sanitizers and masks; they offer a free ambulance service that has already benefited 90 families in the slums through regular medical checks and health services and the distribution of essential medicines and vitamins; they provide online counseling and learning services to around 400 children; and they distributed medical kits, toiletries and nutritional materials and foodstuffs sufficient for a month to over a thousand people.


ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

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