May 28 – BRC & Prameya volunteers at Sandeshkhali

Write up: Debjani C
Ground photos: Oindrila

Heartbreaking information reached us through our volunteers who had set out for Namkhana yesterday, accompanied with visuals of a ravaged land, of wrecked lives. The inhabitants of villages in Namkhana informed that owing to the lockdown, their livelihoods were already severely impacted. Now, their lives and their future hangs in a precarious balance. Their crops have been destroyed and their homes reduced to rubble.

This morning,  Prameya volunteers Sabyasachi and Swadesh set out for Sandeshkhali with 200 tarpaulin sheets and food items (100 packets each of chhatu, puffed rice and chirey) for 100 people. The procurement was managed and supervised by with the help of Swati. This particular initiative is being undertaken in partnership with the Rotaract Club of Central Kolkata who not only spearheaded the initiative but also had ten volunteers on the ground helping out. Rotaract Club of Central Calcutta had procured the following items: 750 kilograms of rice, 150 kilograms of dal, 450 kilograms of potato, 150 kilograms of onion, 150 pieces of tarpaulin and 200 packets (1600 units) of sanitary napkins and face masks that were distributed to 170 families. It is also important to note the contribution of the organizations DISHA (Society for Direct Initiative for Social and Health Action) and DMF (Dakshin Banga MAtsyajibi Forum) who streamlined the process of distribution and helped the volunteers get in touch with families who were in dire need. We also acknowledge the cooperation of the Kanmari Panchayat who let the volunteers use their office space to store the relief materials.

Going forward, relief materials are being procured and sorted to be sent to Jharkhali, Tridibnagar and Subhaspally, followed by Hingalganj, all within the next few days. Apart from the collaboration with Rotaract Club, another fruitful collaboration in the last few days have been with Mr. Sanjay Mondal of Sunderban Safari who brought to attention the need for Syntex tanks and pipes. BRC spread the news of the urgency of this need. Soon, Mr. Mandol informed our volunteers that they have received three tanks of 500-litre capacity and 1 tank of 300-litre capacity. He also let us know that he will be distributing drinking water in Bali, Dulki, Sonargaon, Mollakhali, Rangabelia, Satjelia and Kumimari.

Volunteer teams are also working towards collaborations with other organisations and individuals who are doing pertinent work to provide relief in the cyclone-hit areas. It is also incumbent upon us to note the contribution of our volunteer Swadesh who has been working tirelessly on the ground to provide relief in affected regions even though his family and his dwelling was also brutally impacted by the cyclone. We applaud his hard work and thank him on behalf of everyone at the BRC.

Data on Relief Teams: Udit and Oindrila Basu , Pics : Prameya Field Team, faces hidden to protect dignity

Rotaract Club Data: Amartya Basu

Information from: Swati and Oindrila Basu