Bangalore: Robin Hood Army (RHA), the volunteer-based zero funds organisation has joined hands with WhatsApp, Uber and Google to bring together volunteers who will help vaccinate 1.5 lakh Indians and serve five million meals to those most affected by the pandemic across every State of India by August 15, 2021.
The initiative named #mission28states is a national effort across 28 States in the country, in which RHA volunteers shall bring together civil society supported by three leading technology firms to address two key challenges facing our nation today – feeding the hungry and ensuring every Indian is vaccinated before a potential deadly third wave. Like every RHA initiative that operated on a no-funds approach, all the support brought in by the technology partners will be used to achieve #mission28states throughout India.
Speaking on the occasion, Neel Ghose, Founder, The Robin Hood Army said, “The pandemic has been devastating for lakhs of families and widened inequities across our communities. Whilst the government and administrations are doing their best, it’s important that civic society steps up and contribute our talent and resources. In the lead up to our Independence Day, this year through the support of WhatsApp, Uber and Google for the #mission28states, Robins will mobilise 1.5 lakh people to get the COVID-19 vaccine and at least five million meals across every State of India between July 31 – August 15, 2021. At the Robin Hood Army, we are stoked to bring together civil society and leading technology partners together to undertake this massive effort to increase outreach against COVID-19 and create impact across every State in the country.”
The #mission28states will be executed in three parts:
- Rations and Vaccines: Thousands of Robin Hood Army volunteers, called ‘Robins’ will drive awareness campaigns and organize 1.5 lakh citizens to be vaccinated across 28 states. In addition, during this period, Robins will also serve at least five million meals to the neediest. The focus of drives shall be on serving citizens who have the least access to vaccines – homeless families, the transgender community, rural inhabitants among others.
- Technology Partners: Robin Hood Army’s chatbot, to solicit volunteers, is powered by WhatsApp; people from across the country can now sign up as volunteers and join the mission seamlessly using just their mobile phones.
- As the national mobility partner, Uber is providing the wheels to this mission whereby it will deploy thousands of free Uber rides for the volunteers to mobilise people to vaccination centres and distribute meals while Google will provide millions of meals which will be served to those affected by the pandemic.
- Media: Robin Hood Army has partnered at local and national levels with radio stations, billboard companies, influencers, media houses, and digital groups to mobilise local communities and broadcast the urgency of the national vaccination programme.
Speaking about the RHA initiative, Abhijit Bose, Head of WhatsApp India, said, “WhatsApp has been an integral medium for civic actors like Robin Hood Army, to reach Covid-19 relief efforts to people, at scale. In line with WhatsApp’s vision for India, to contribute meaningfully and build solutions were needed the most, we are inspired to support Robin Hood Army further by powering a WhatsApp chatbot solution that helps to solicit volunteers for #mission28states, that is aimed at bringing relief to the impacted communities during this unprecedented pandemic.”
Speaking on this initiative, Prabhjeet Singh, President, Uber India and South Asia, said, “We’re thrilled to be joining forces with our valued partner, the Robin Hood Army, for supporting the #mission28states campaign. It will be an honour for us to join the war against COVID across India. At Uber, we are committed to ensure mobility is not a barrier to timely vaccination of the underserved communities and for fighting crippling hunger amidst those, worst impacted by the pandemic. Working together, we can help our communities to recover faster and reboot the economy.”