Aryaloka Computer Education (ACE) COVID OUTREACH; helping promising but very disadvantaged students
The regular work of the ACE (teaching computer and life skills to young adults) continues to be disrupted by the pandemic and the need for social distancing; however the staff of ACE have been supported for the last 18 months by the Karuna Trust, in the UK. In this time, they have been busy providing other forms of relief. Aryaketu has also been liasing with some of the Buddhist doctors in Nagpur; with their help he took some training as an ambulance attendant, hired a vehicle, converted it into an ambulance, installed oxygen cylinders, found a driver, and for a month provided ambulance services to some of the sickest and poorest people in Nagpur. (Photo to follow). Note that BODHI did not provide any funds for that project. In a country like Australia it would be completely impossible to do this so quickly - it would take years to do the training - but India is not like Australia; we are sure Aryaketu's initiative gave some hope and comfort in the desperate crisis India has recently endured.
On June 9, 2021 we spoke with Aryaketu. He is preparing two proposals:
1. Emergency food rations (cA$5,000). There is still great need - although the Indian government is now providing food rations to very poor people affected by COVID some still "slip through the cracks". The food rations are mainly rice and wheat, no legumes. BODHI's funds will also include sanitary items. This project will be administered by Aryaketu and his staff and team of helpers, who are available while their normal work remains disrupted. Aryaketu is also helping some people (eg some homeless) apply for a the ration card.
2: Some extra computers, 3 of which (laptops) will be provided as long term loans (from ACE) to 3 very promising students, from very poor backgrounds. All these recipients are young women, one is Muslim (not that that matters but we want to remind readers that our recipients need not be Buddhist).