Today, the Catalyst Management Services – COVIDActionCollab (CAC), along with the U.S.Agency for International Development (USAID), celebrated the major milestone of reaching over 10 million people from vulnerable communities across 35 of India’s states and union territories, with critical COVID-19 services since June 2020.
At a virtual event, “Forward Together,” organized to mark the achievement, Ms.Sangita Patel, Director – Health Office, USAID/India said, “The humanitarian crisis triggered by the pandemic has affected vulnerable and marginalized communities disproportionately.Support from the U.S.government and USAID has positively impacted the lives of millions of vulnerable people, strengthened systems of community networks to respond during health emergencies, supported local governments on their resilience preparedness efforts, and engaged the private sector for last mile delivery of COVID-19 vaccines. We are hopeful that these lessons and partnerships from COVID-19 programs will be leveraged to improve broader public health systems in India and other countries.”.
CAC is addressing the impact of the pandemic and reaching vulnerable individuals by strengthening the capacity of local organizations, local governments, associations of healthcare providers, small retailers, and street vendors, and linking them with government and private sector resources.CAC also supports the VaxNow campaign, which is working to increase and ensure equity to COVID-19 vaccines for the most vulnerable and hard to reach populations.
CAC has helped to generate awareness around vaccination, support the screening of non-communicable diseases, provide access to government-provided social protection schemes, and importantly, helped to strengthen COVID-19 supply chain management by sharing best practices and supporting the private sector to strengthen testing and vaccination within workplaces.
With an India-wide network of over 350 organizations, CAC has benefitted 10 million beneficiaries, including sex workers, members of the transgender community, domestic workers, farmers, street vendors, and people with disabilities with access to vaccines, healthcare services, rations, and livelihood support during the COVID-19 pandemic.
By engaging key private players like Big Basket, Vihara, Indian Society of Healthcare Professionals, Vaccine on Wheels, ACT Grants, Boston Consulting Group, CAC has been able to strengthen its network and magnify its efforts.
“From the beginning of the pandemic, we, along with USAID and our 350 partners were able to meet some of the most pressing needs of vulnerable communities through our Comprehensive COVID-19 support package.
We are extremely proud that our collective efforts could bring positive change to over 10 million lives.As India prepares itself for subsequent waves of COVID-19, the vulnerable groups will need continued and sustained support.
By combining the grassroots knowledge of community-based organizations and the resources of private players, we look forward to reaching more communities through our programs.For the months ahead, our vision is to ensure that no one is left behind, expanding our initial purpose for COVID relief to encompass a range of other efforts targeted to help all vulnerable communities”, said Shiv Kumar -Chief Integrator, COVIDActionCollab.