Mars offers vital medical equipment for India, as it battles coronavirus crisis
MUMBAI/INDIA - MAY 11, 2020: Migrant workers walk on the highway on their journey back home during a nationwide lockdown to fight the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus.
The Mars group has released plans to deliver vital medical equipment valued at $2.3 million as part of its ongoing community support measures in India, as it battles the coronavirus crisis, writes Neill Barston.
As the business, which includes its key confectionery division, explained, it has formed an aid partnership with global organisations such as Oxfam, CARE and Business Fights Poverty, alongside governments and local NGO Sankalp Beautiful World.
The collaborative effort is set to target access to healthcare, critical medical equipment, medications and services for families and children in need.
This includes improving health infrastructure as raised by medical professionals on the frontline, Mars is providing 404 oxygen concentrators for patients in hospitals as well as home quarantine, 200 oxygen masks and 200 oxygen central pipeline flow meters, transportation from villages to medical or quarantine centres, food rations, and other necessary, life-saving measures.
These resources are intended to provide lasting support that will continue to benefit communities throughout Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Uttar Pradesh, and Tamil Nadu.
Expressing his thoughts, Mr. Kalpesh R Parmar, General Manager, Mars Wrigley, India said: “The past few months have been difficult and times like these, require us to step up and support one another. Mars has always been committed to India and the health and well-being of our communities is our priority. We have been working with frontline workers and communities in different parts of the country since last year, and this initiative is another step towards ramping up the medical infrastructure. It is heartening to see everyone rallying together to help in whatever way they can.”
As part of the total, the Mars Wrigley Foundation has awarded $300,000 (INR 2.1 Crores) to Save the Children, who in addition to medical equipment and support, will provide broader healthcare services for families and children. The Tasty Bite Foundation, a non-profit organisation of Tasty Bite Eatables Limited, a Mars group entity, has also donated approximately $82,000 (INR 59 Lakhs) to create two healthcare centres with 160 beds each for affected patients and have equipped two hospitals with life-saving equipment and medicines in Maharashtra.
Furthermore, Mars added that it had unveiled a number of other initiatives for its workforce and surrounding communities in which it operates and sources ingredients.
It has rolled out a series of comprehensive health & well-being initiatives, to benefit Associates, contracted workers and people who support the business in India. This includes corporate vaccination sponsorship for over 6,000 Associates, contractors and their family members to help and encourage them to take this significant step in fighting this battle, along with other support measures.
Sudarshan Suchi, Chief Executive Officer, Save the Children India, added: “The support from the Mars Wrigley Foundation will help us ensure that children survive, thrive, and learn during this challenging period. With this support, we will provide essential healthcare supplies and equipment to children and their families. Additionally, we will strengthen our healthcare infrastructure and provide support in rolling out the Government’s vaccine programme. We thank the Mars Wrigley Foundation for awarding USD$300,000 towards our mission to protect a million children and their families in India.”