The Problem

Many people in the world have experienced the pain of losing a friend or family member because of COVID-19, but did anyone ever imagine that we would see a day where thousands of people would die due to the lack of oxygen? That they would one day be gasping for that one single breath, a breath that we have taken for granted? Fortunately, many of us are privileged enough to not have to think twice about oxygen, but the same cannot be said for the people in India.

Until recently, India was able to distribute vaccines to 95 different countries. According to India’s Ministry of External Affairs, the country, as of May 20th, 2021, has supplied 66.3698 million vaccines (mea.gov.in). However, when the restrictions eased up towards the end of the first wave, India did not anticipate the sudden surge of the cases due to new and stronger variants of the virus. This took the country by shock, and with no time to gather the resources to help people, it resulted in more than 4,500 deaths per day. Now, COVID-19 has become the leading cause of death in India with 283,000 (CNBC Report, May 19th, 2021) lives lost in just over a year. This second wave of COVID-19 has immensely disrupted the day-to-day operations in India and has left many families devastated due to inadequate healthcare resources.

A majority of these deaths are due to the deficit of oxygen and ventilators in hospitals across the country. Many children are being orphaned and displaced in this process as they are losing their families and their lives are left with no hopes of a return to normalcy. With the recent emergence of the new variant, children are getting infected as well, which is anticipated to scale up the crisis to a significant extent (India Today).

Operation Breathe is an initiative started by the Young Changemakers of NorthSouth (YCNS) to help alleviate the current COVID-19 crisis that is currently wreaking havoc in India. Our mission is to help treat the onslaught of patients and curb the number of children being orphaned from this pandemic by addressing the immediate and short-term needs in urban and rural hospitals by collaborating with credible grassroots organizations.

Our Solution

We are a group of passionate elementary to high school students, who are deeply moved by these mortifying statistics. We have to come together with a plan to aid India during this hardship, through Operation Breathe. We want to achieve this by raising funds to distribute relief items such as masks, oxygen concentrators, ventilators, PPE kits, and fowler cots with mattresses to the impacted across all of India.

As an accountable non-profit organization, to ensure that every penny donated is spent towards the cause, we are only partnering with organizations that are Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) compliant and are working on this cause at a grassroots level with no layers in between to maximize the relief support and minimize the overhead costs. NSF partnered organizations will directly work with public health care facilities and hospitals to access the local needs. Our goal is to ensure that every penny received will give a new breath to the people of India.

Our team has a proven track record of making a difference - most recently with the YCNS Devices project during Covid-19 in 2020. We were able to raise over $100K, and are well on our way to donating 1000 devices to underprivileged children in many states across the United States. As the need is more than our initial assessments, we are currently in the process of starting over 10 local chapters for the devices initiative across the US. From all these experiences, we would be implementing the best practices from our experience to successfully execute Operation Breathe in a timely and efficient manner. ( Devices Initiative )

Our Goal

Regardless of the problem, our goal is to help people in need irrespective of race, color, religion, or nationality. As young changemakers, we believe in being global citizens addressing the problems anywhere in the world. While continuing to address the digital divide in the US, we feel the need to address the current adversity people in India are facing to even breathe. We want to save as many people as we can from this pain and loss.

For this reason, we are in front of you, with an initial goal to raise $25000 and donate it to organizations that meet our clear-cut criteria. By donating to this cause, not only will you be helping adults facing life-threatening illness, but also the children who depend on them to live. We are fortunate to be associated with the NorthSouth Foundation and are extremely thankful for the 1:1 matching that we will be receiving. The NorthSouth Foundation is a 501(c)3 organization (Tax ID: 36-3659998) and all your contributions are 100% tax-deductible. We hope you will consider contributing to each breath that can save a child and their parents in India! Every dollar makes a difference!

If you have any questions, please feel free to email us at operationbreathe@northsouth.org

Resources
  • WION News
  • Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India
  • India Covid Cases May have Peaked but Deaths Hit New Record
  • Singapore, UAE to vaccinate 12-15 year olds. When will India's turn come