Support group sets out to support Northamptonshire's Indian residents in face of Covid-19 impact on BAME communities
"Working on this project has been a great reminder to me why the charity sector is so valuable."
A support group has been created to reach out to Northamptonshire's Asian communities in the lockdown in the face of the virus' disproportionate impact on ethnic minority groups.
For unknown reasons, black and ethnic minority communities (BAME) in the UK have suffered a far higher death rate during the coronavirus epidemic.
Patients of Indian ethnic background are suffering from a death rate of 35 per 100,000 registered hospital deaths according to The Guardian. Meanwhile, Black Caribbean backgrounds are reportedly affected by a death rate of 78 per 100,000.
Now, a support group has been created with a goal to support Northamptonshire's Asian communities during the outbreak.
The group - 'Asha Deep, Light & Hope' - launched on May 4 with a goal to operate for at least 12 weeks. So far, it has delivered 75 hot vegetarian meals and is organising food parcels for self-isolating households. Information of coronavirus has been distributed across Northamptonshire to over 500 people in five different languages.
It is also providing a wellbeing call service to reach out to isolated people and a welfare benefit service to make sure people have the money they need.
The group's Northampton co-ordinator Jagruti Patel said: "Working on this project has been a great reminder to me why the charity sector is so valuable - all at Asha Deep are totally and wholeheartedly committed to helping those in need.
"This is reflected in the overwhelming gratitude we receive back from those who are at the receiving end of the services."
Asha-Deep is also searching for volunteers to receive training and support to continue their work, as well as donations of food items or cash for an Indian food parcel.
For more information, email the group on [email protected]
The Asha-Deep project has been set up through a partnership between the Wellingborough District Hindu Association, the Indian Hindu Welfare Organisation, the Northamptonshire Rights and Equality Council and Pravasi Mandal, which has received funding from the National Emergencies Trust and the Northamptonshire Community Foundation.