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World America 16 Mar 2020 Indian-Americans ste ...

Indian-Americans step up to help community hit by virus outbreak

Published Mar 16, 2020, 4:34 pm IST
Updated Mar 16, 2020, 4:34 pm IST
The COVID-19 pandemic has infected 3,777 people and claimed 69 lives in the US
PTI Photo
 PTI Photo

Washington: Several eminent Indian-American groups in the US have set up helplines and deployed volunteers to help community members, including a large number of Indian students, hit by the coronavirus crisis.

The COVID-19 pandemic has infected 3,777 people and claimed 69 lives in the country. The country has stepped up efforts to contain the virus by placing travel restrictions, closing schools, restaurants and bars and cancelling entertainment events across the country.


Sewa International, a leading Indian-American non-profit organization, has released USD 10,000 to run its 24X7 helpline and coronavirus awareness campaign through a team of 20 physicians.

It has also established various chapters across the country who are working with the Indian Embassy and consulates to help families obtain visas to travel to India in emergency situations.

There are over 250,000 students from India studying in US universities. More than 300 US Universities have closed including some who have moved instructions to a virtual mode, and even shut their dorms. Sewa has fielded calls from Indian foreign students from such universities who are finding it difficult to cope up emotionally, health wise and financially, said Professor Sree Sreenath, president of Sewa International.


Local businesses and medical professionals are offering their services to the community most times pro bono through Sewa International.

Its volunteers are providing multiple services including delivering free food, assisting the elderly in grocery shopping and visiting a doctor and helping those who are faced with travel and visa issues.

We are also offering family therapist calls for helping parents deal with anxiety and stress, he said.

Federation of Indian-American Associations of Georgia is working with all universities across Georgia and Alabama to help students hit by the situation created due to the coronavirus crisis.


Telugu Association of North America (TANA) has established a COVID-19 helpline for the Indian students affected by the sudden closure of universities and educational institutions as part of the coronavirus preventive measures.