In March of 2020, the whole world was struck with COVID-19. The world literally came to a halt. Everything changed overnight. And some countries were impacted more than others. In the US, the shortage of TP signaled impending doom!
But in India, and many other places around the globe, it was a matter of surviving from day to day. Most rural families in India live one day at a time. They are day laborers, earning little more than enough for the family to eat for one day. Those families were not able to work due to the complete lockdown – no travel except to buy food.
The pandemic also created great hardships for workers who had migrated to the urban areas for steady work. When the pandemic struck, all public transportation was stopped in order to reduce the rapid spread of the virus. Workers were stranded hundreds of miles from home. It took days or weeks to walk back to their village, often with all their belongings and family.
Then came the crushing blow to Bethany Girls Home. Seventy-three girls were required to return to family, relatives, or foster care since no gatherings of more than ten people were allowed. The administration at Bethany decided to use the monthly sponsorship funds to care for them and their family in their temporary homes. The $50/mo. provided by sponsors was adequate for the families who had no other resources. Many of the families also had medical issues requiring medications they could not pay for. So, we began a COVID-19 Relief program to raise money to provide daily necessities for the families who now had another mouth to feed.
Using the monthly sponsorship funds and the Relief funds, we were able to provide for the families for over a year. Those funds literally saved hundreds of lives from starvation and treatable diseases.
The teachers and staff at the TPG School also provided emergency funds and resources, raised locally, to serve many of the families of their 400 students. The school was closed, so it became a relief center. The TPG facility also served as temporary housing for families who lost their homes due to heavy rains and flooding during the monsoon season.
Many recipients of that demonstrated love are now coming forth with gratitude and appreciation. Many are asking, “Who are you people?”, “Who is this God you serve?” and “Who is Jesus?”
Bible studies followed, often resulting in a “holy dip.”
God is honored. God is praised. Because God is Great.
We didn’t expect those outcomes … but, we should have.
Want to help provide releif now to India for the second wave hitting India and Nepal? Click on this link and help us save lives.
Ray Hooper, India Director