A second wave of the coronavirus has hit particularly hard in India, with cases and deaths rising exponentially through March and April. The latest stats indicate the country has had more than 23 million total cases, and in excess of a quarter of a million deaths, with a rolling average of 378,000 new cases per day – though experts believe even those figures underestimate the true severity of the situation.
Funding provided by the LEGO Group and the LEGO Foundation to Save the Children India will therefore be used to support families at risk in Delhi, Maharashtra, Rajasthan and West Bengal, minimising disruption to the education of around 20,000 children while providing food security and COVID-19 care kits for families.
“The latest outbreak is having a devastating impact on caregiving and schooling for the country’s most vulnerable children,” said LEGO Group India General Manager Steen Lauge Kokkenborg. “We hope this contribution will provide some security to children and families as well as allow children to continue to learn through play and build vital skills despite schools being closed.”
The care kits will apparently be designed to ‘reduce infection rates’, though the LEGO Group and Foundation haven’t disclosed exactly how they’ll achieve that.
“Save the Children has embarked on a journey to reach and protect one million people across multiple locations in India, and we thank our friends at the LEGO Group for pledging $1 million and providing us with crucial and timely support with our ambition,” added Save the Children India CEO Sudarshan Suchi.
“With this support, we will focus on children’s survival by distributing COVID-19 care kits, food and nutrition support and hosting medical consultations. Additionally, we will take our relief a step further and focus on ensuring learning continuity through the crisis – a fantastic aspect of this partnership.
“By concentrating on learning continuity, we are guaranteeing physical, psychosocial, and cognitive security that will ensure the growth and development of our children remains intact.”
The LEGO Group is also supporting the ongoing relief efforts of the state government in Maharashtra, the home of the company’s Mumbai office. While there’s no particular timestamp on that support, the $1 million donation to Save the Children India will span eight months, from May to December 2021.