AID Responds to COVID

FAQ & Press Kit

We are providing Covid-19 relief through grassroots partners at the last mile, among the rural and marginalized communities in India. Find more details of AID’s three tier response below.

Latest updates Press Release (April 28, 2021)

Our Covid-19 relief efforts have been covered by international media such as New York Times, CNN, Boston Globe and BBC Hindi. Other media mentions are being recorded in this document.

You can also find curated high resolution photographs and AID Logos here.

Frequently asked questions

What is AID's response to second COVID wave in India?

The second wave of COVID has hit India – particularly rural India –  like another tsunami. Learning from last year’s experience, we have rapidly implemented a comprehensive and layered three-tiered approach to deal with the immediate healthcare crisis:

  • Mass information campaigns to build awareness about the disease, early identification of COVID symptoms, scientifically backed home-care, safe masking/distancing practices, and for removing vaccine hesitancy and ensuring equitable vaccine access
  • Setting up rural COVID-care centers in multiple states for the mild to moderately ill patients, and 24×7 helplines and help-desks in government hospitals to guide and support patients
  • Providing medical equipment support to low-resourced hospitals to take care of the seriously ill patients

How did AID respond to the first COVID wave in 2020?

For over 15 months, AID has been deeply engaged in COVID relief and rehabilitation efforts in India. During the first COVID wave in 2020, AID’s efforts helped 200,000 people affected by the disease and the government-mandated lockdowns. We partnered with 30 grassroots organizations across 18 states to provide PPE to frontline workers, and food essentials, grocery support and direct cash transfers to communities left out of the government safety net, including migrant workers stranded in cities and remote villages.

Why does the impact of the crisis seem so much worse this time compared to 2020?

Historically second waves of pandemics have tended to be worse than the first wave. The current crisis in India has engulfed India like a veritable tsunami. This seems to be due to a combination of reasonscomplacency from a relatively low impact first wave of the virus, a lack of testing and an underreporting of cases, which slowed the reaction to the spike, a lack of forethought in allowing super-spreader events like the Hindu Kumbh Mela festival and state elections without proper precautions, and a lack of transparency in how the government was attempting to prepare for such a spike. The foundational reason behind the dire situation is, of course, the long-term underinvestment in the country’s health care system.

Where in India are AID's efforts located?

AID supports grassroots partners across India. During the first wave of the pandemic, AID worked in 18 states across India, supporting 65 projects through 44 NGOs. Before the pandemic, we supported over 100 projects each year across 20 states in India.

How many grassroots partners does AID work with on the ground?

Since our founding in 1991, AID has had the privilege of learning from and working with hundreds of inspirational grassroots organizations from all corners of India. Pre-pandemic we supported over 100 number of projects from >100 grassroots partners. During the first wave of the pandemic in 2020, we worked with 30 partners – extant and new – towards COVID relief and rehabilitation efforts.

Which communities does AID work with?

At AID, we strive to focus on the just, sustainable and equitable development of the most marginalized communities in India. Often, these are communities who are oppressed on one or more axes of caste, class, gender, religion and/or access to natural resources.

How has the Indian American community contributed to AID COVID efforts?

The Indian American community has been invaluable to our COVID relief efforts. Members of the large Indian diaspora in the United States not only donate generously and regularly to support AID efforts on the ground in India but many also routinely volunteer with AID. People with diverse skill sets have been contributing to the relief efforts in a multitude of different ways: Indian American doctors have organized medical advice helplines for non-severe COVID cases, Indian tech workers have built apps and websites to track availability of oxygen, hospital beds and vaccines, numerous folks have raised funds for COVID relief, coordinated relief efforts, talked to communities and AID partners in India, translated informational material into regional languages and much, much more!

How can people contribute to these COVID relief efforts?

You can contribute in a variety of different ways! 

  1. Donate generously to our relief efforts on our website 
  2. Volunteer with AID and help us coordinate relief efforts on the ground. Drop us a line at [email protected] or sign up here
  3. Spread the word! Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn.

Does AID have experience in disaster and rehabilitation efforts?

Indeed. AID has been involved in numerous relief and rehabilitation efforts after natural disasters in India including earthquakes (Gujarat 2001), tsunamis (Tamil Nadu 2004), cyclones (Odisha (1999), West Bengal (Aila 2009, Amphan 2020)), floods (Uttarakhand (2013), Chennai (2015), Bihar (2019), Assam (2017, 2019), Kerala (2019)) and COVID (pan-India (2020, 2021)). 

What is the history of AID and its vision?

AID was founded in 1991 by Ravi Kuchimanchi who was a graduate student in Physics at the University of Maryland, College Park. Today, there are hundreds of volunteers in 40+ AID chapters spread across numerous cities in the USA, India, Australia and other countries

AID strives towards the sustainable, equitable and just development of some of the most marginalized communities in India. We partner with over 100 community-based grassroots groups across India to effect impactful, holistic change in diverse areas of social development including education, LGBTQ and transgender rights, sustainable agriculture, environmental justice and healthcare access.

Who is the media contact for queries and interviews?

Shrinaath Chidambaram

Director, Association for India’s Development

Phone: 508-561-8937

Email: [email protected]


Stories from the ground

Sounding Assam
Patients’ voices during the Pandemic
COVID relief and recovery – Anil Hebbar reports from Assam and Maharashtra
Empty Space at the Table
Santap Sabha – Anger Assembly of COVID Widows
Covid Helpline and relief efforts of civil society organizations recognised by Telangana Government

Click on the states to see the projects supported there.

AndhraPradesh ArunachalPradesh Assam Bihar Chhattisgarh Goa Gujarat Haryana HimachalPradesh Jammuand Kashmir Jharkhand Karnataka Kerala Madhya Pradesh Maharashtra Manipur Meghalaya Mizoram Nagaland Odisha Punjab Rajasthan Sikkim TamilNadu Telangana Tripura Uttar Pradesh Uttarakhand WestBengal Andaman andNicobar Islands Chandigarh Dadra and Nagar Haveli Daman and Diu Lakshadweep National CapitalTerritory of Delhi Puducherry

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