National, May 6, 2020: GMR Varalakshmi Foundation (GMRVF), the CSR arm of GMR Group, has come forward to support the Government agencies by producing and distributing cotton-made masks for frontline warriors and vulnerable segments of the society. In line with the PM’s appeal to use home-made masks, hundreds of GMRVF-trained women tailors have been engaged in preparing masks and other protective equipment.
Recognising the importance of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) kits as a critical aid to curtail the spread of the virus, GMRVF took the initiative to contribute its bit in this time of crisis in its project locations. GMRVF has mobilised nearly 500 women from Rajam, Hyderabad, Warora, Bajoli Holi, Badrinath, Kamalanga, Ananthapur and Kakinada in making masks and other PPE. These women have already produced over 25,000 masks to date, which have been distributed to its community members as well as frontline workers at many of its operational areas. The beneficiaries include security staff, sanitation workers, policemen, Panchayat staff, migrant labourers, bank officials, local villagers, health professionals and others involved in COVID relief activities. These women, helping the Government agencies in their efforts to produce masks and PPE suits in large scale, have been trained and mobilised by GMRVF from its communities.
Pals Plush Soft Toys Company at GMR’s Kakinada Special Economic Zone in Andhra Pradesh is being used to make two lakh PPE kits to be given by the district administration for the frontline health workers. About 300 trained women of GMRVF have been mobilised for stitching the PPE suits and masks at this facility. The Government of Andhra Pradesh is planning to give three masks to each family in the State and have a requirement of about 15 crore masks. GMRVF has mobilised close to 200 women from its Self-Help Group. They are already engaged in the first order of making 20,000 masks.
Besides these, sanitation material such as sanitisers, hand wash, soap bars etc. are also being distributed to the government hospitals in some project locations for its usage by healthcare workers. The Foundation is also supporting migrant labourers stranded in Delhi and Hyderabad due to nationwide lockdown by providing them cooked meals. Hundreds of vulnerable families around the GMR businesses have also been provided with dry ration kits. In addition, old age homes, orphanages, schools for specially-abled, etc. have been provided with dry rations, sanitary kits and other safety measures.
“The pandemic has brought about unprecedented suffering and anxiety. Availability of masks and personal protective equipment is a critical weapon in this war. At this time of need, GMRVF is supporting sections of the society who have been standing at the forefront through large scale production and distribution of masks and PPE. This is being done by mobilising women trained in tailoring by GMRVF. Not only is this helping the public safety effort, but also providing some income to these women in these difficult times. All the production activities are being carried out by maintaining physical distance and other health advisories as directed by the Government of India. Apart from this, the GMR Group has also contributed over Rs Eight Crore towards the PM and CM Relief Funds to support in their efforts to prevent the spread of the coronavirus,” said Meena Raghunathan, Executive Director – CSR, GMRVF.