Sewa International sends millions of dollars worth medical equipment to India

Sewa International USA Facebook profile photo for the India Covid Relief initiative in the second phase of pandemic upsurge. Photo: Facebook

Sewa International, a non-profit based in Houston, TX, with 43 chapters around the U.S., says it has spent more than $6 million to procure lifesaving equipment in the last two weeks such as oxygen concentrators, ventilators, BiPap, and CPAP machines as part of its ‘Help India Defeat COVID-19’ Campaign.

According to a May 10, 2021 press release from Sewa, the equipment shipped to India from New York on Friday, May 7, included 260 Inogen oxygen concentrators, 1,000 oximeters, and nine BiPap machines. MedShare, a non-profit organization that sources and delivers surplus medical supplies and equipment to communities in need, donated the concentrators.

The UPS Foundation partnered with Sewa International to ship them to New Delhi by air for free.

So far, Sewa has spent over $3.5 million to order 7,482 oxygen concentrators and procured 5,118 of them from various vendors in the U.S. and elsewhere, the organization said.

Of these, Sewa has shipped 2,844 oxygen concentrators, and 2,084 of them have reached India. They are being distributed to government hospitals and COVID-19 care centers and hospitals run by Sewa’s partner organizations.

Sewa is planning to ship more than 6,000 additional oxygen concentrators to India in the next two weeks, the press release said.

“Shipping large quantities of medical equipment to another country from the US has a lot of logistical challenges. We are optimizing our shipments so that they reach India fast,” Sewa’s President Arun Kankani is quoted saying in the press release.

“Sewa has established a control room in Atlanta, and it is managed by ten Sewa volunteers. They are constantly researching the availability of medical equipment, vendor credentials, price, and other details to purchase them or find donors who can donate them to us,” Kankani said.

“We have received phenomenal support from across the US for our ‘Help India Defeat COVID-19 Campaign’. Many corporates, hospitals, and community organizations are calling us to offer help. Sewa volunteers are working hard to connect the dots. We thank all those who have given help and continue to offer support to Sewa in this time of crisis,” Kankani added.

The organization says equipment it has sent to India has gone to 17 states.

The states include Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chattisgarh, Delhi, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, Rajasthan, Telangana, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh, according to Sewa’s Vice President for Disaster Recovery Swadesh Katoch.

“It’s very important to save every life and I am confident that the equipment we have sent to India will ease the shortage of emergency equipment and help COVID-19 patients recover and enable families to protect their loved ones,” Katoch added.

Sewa started its campaign to aid India on April 23, 2021, when it saw an alarming rise in the daily number of new COVID-19 cases and fatalities.

In total, Sewa has raised $16 million for this initiative so far including $7.7 million from over 104,000 donors from its Facebook campaign and $4.2 million through its website

Describing itself as a “Hindu faith-based charitable nonprofit,” Sewa works in the areas of disaster recovery, education, and development and serves people regardless of race, color, religion, sex, age, disability, or national origin, the press release said.



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