NEW DELHI: The PepsiCo Foundation to launch an extensive community relief outreach program to support Government of India’s ongoing efforts against Covid-19, PepsiCo informed.
The Foundation has partnered with Sustainable Environment and Ecological Development Society (SEEDS), a leading not-for-profit organization, which will drive Covid -19 vaccinations for the community at large, set up Covid care centres equipped with beds and medical facilities including oxygen cylinders.
Additionally, oxygen concentrators will also be provided to Central Government for distribution to various Government hospitals, the company said.
The entire community relief program will be rolled out across the country with a special focus on five states – Maharashtra, Punjab, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, and Telangana.
As part of the initiative, extensive awareness drives will also be organized across various states to promote vaccination amongst the population at large.
These sessions will be conducted in partnership with NGOs including SEEDS along with the local Government authorities.
In the first phase of the program, over 1,00,000 vaccine doses will be provided to communities at large administered through the local healthcare system. Further, five Covid care centers would also be set up in key states for three months. Each centre will be equipped with beds and will have all key medical facilities including oxygen cylinders for emergency use, medical equipment, provision of meals among others. Additionally, over 100 state- of- the- art oxygen concentrators are also being procured and will be provided to various State Government authorities to support their on-ground requirements.
In the second phase, the PepsiCo Foundation will be rolling out partnerships with other NGOs to support the frontline Covid warriors with PPE kits, N95 and surgical 3 ply masks, pulse oximeters, sanitizers, etc.
On partnering with PepsiCo Foundation for the intervention program, Dr Manu Gupta, Co-Founder, SEEDS, said, “As India navigates through the second wave of Covid-19, we need to unite and look at ways to offer all the possible support to the ongoing efforts. Access to medical infrastructure in the affected marginalized communities is limited and makes survival rates much lower.”
“The need of the hour, therefore, is to step up a robust vaccination drive, create Covid care centres and help facilitate the supply of critical needs such as oxygen. We are ready to work closely with PepsiCo Foundation in their efforts to mitigate the impact of the second wave of Covid-19 pandemic.”, Gupta added.
Ahmed ElSheikh, President, PepsiCo India, said, “India is embattling the second wave of the pandemic and we all are facing a challenging situation. In these difficult times, it becomes even more important for businesses to come together and partner with Centre and State Governments, civil society, NGOs, and healthcare institutions to support communities in need.”
“Vaccination is one way which can help us combat Covid-19 and we are thankful to have partners like SEEDS to front-end the community vaccination drives and set up Covid care centres. As a company, we will continue to do our best and stand with the Nation in these unprecedented times.”, he added.
In addition to community care initiatives, PepsiCo India has also committed to cover the cost of vaccination for its employees and their spouses. As part of the same initiative, vaccinations drives are being organized in partnership with leading healthcare providers.
Since the onset of the pandemic last year, PepsiCo India has been actively stepping up its community support programs. The company has provided over 10 million meals to the underserved communities and has made available over 35,000 COVID-19 test kits to various government labs and hospitals. The effort involved PepsiCo India partnering with leading NGOs such as Akshaya Patra Foundation, Smile Foundation, CII Foundation, and Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND).
The company also provided hygiene kits to farmers and truck drivers across states to ensure their well-being and safety during the pandemic. The programs were rolled out in 13 states — Maharashtra, Gujarat, Punjab, Haryana, West Bengal, Assam, Bihar, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Delhi, Karnataka, and Rajasthan.