The transgender community has been one of the worst-hit sections of society due to the crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. All sources of income have been blocked and most are unable to access support being provided by the government due to lack of formal documentation and identification.
Wishes and Blessings, a Delhi-based NGO, distributes ration kits to 100 families of the transgender community in a Covid relief drive.
Reaching out to marginalized communities
While executing Covid relief in Delhi with the aid of Wishes and Blessings Relief Vans, the Wishes and Blessings team realized that there was no aid reaching the transgender community residing in Ajmeri Gate, Delhi. The team took it upon themselves to ensure that all their basic needs and requirements were met.
After fundraising and executing due diligence, a relief drive was held on 20th August. Ration and essential supplies were distributed to 100 families belonging to the transgender community to fill the gap that was created by the crisis. The President of the Delhi Chapter, (name withheld for privacy) said, “Due to the lockdown we completely lost all sources of income. We would visit weddings to give our blessings, but since that has stopped, we have nowhere to turn. We would also sustain ourselves by begging but that is no longer helping us. These past 5 months have been very difficult. Today, I am so happy. We got enough ration to sustain ourselves. Blessings to everyone who has helped us today!”
Founder and President of Wishes and Blessings, Dr. Geetanjali Chopra said, “Wishes and Blessings believes in extending a helping hand to all communities irrespective of caste, class, age and gender. We have always laid special emphasis on reaching out to those who are marginalized including Commercial Sex Workers and members of the transgender community. While there are many organizations doing good work to reach out to those who have been impacted by the lockdown, very often these communities are left ignored. We feel blessed that we could reach out to these beneficiaries and provide them with the means to sustain themselves until they are able to resume normal life.”
The organization aims to continue relief drives until their beneficiaries are assured of their security.
The Wishes and Blessings Covid Relief Project
Wishes and Blessings is determined to reach out to all those who have been harshly affected by the lockdown, and aims to share the load with the government and other organizations working on the field and launched the Wishes and Blessings Covid Relief Project on day 1 of the lockdown itself (25th March 2020).
The organization has converted its day care centers into shelter homes to ensure that the homeless have a safe space to stay till the lockdown is lifted. Hygiene supplies have been procured to safeguard the health of all.
A larger part of their efforts is providing nutritional aid in the form of cooked meals and ration kits. At the project’s peak the organization served 45,000 meals/ day and distributed ration kits to over 8,000 families across 7 states- Assam, Delhi, Jharkhand, Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal.