“I know everything about coronavirus. It’s very dangerous, the whole world is struggling. Most people who can afford and have a place to stay are indoors. But for people like us, the choice is between safety and hunger. What should we pick?”
–V Prajapati*

The COVID-19 lockdown is rapidly escalating the hunger crisis in India. The Government has announced schemes to address food poverty following nationwide curfews, but these will take time to reach the 380 million daily wage labourers and their families, if at all.

There is something you can do right now. You can provide 500 meals to feed families who are hardest hit with £30 / $38 – the average cost of dinner out. That’s 6 pence / 8 cents for a meal. We ask that you donate to this appeal.

Who will the funds go to?
The iProbono India team works closely with local organisations and grassroots groups across the country. They are the first responders to this crisis. Our partner organisations support communities that are already living on the edge – daily wage earners, single women-headed households, people freed from bonded labour, the elderly, disabled people, and those otherwise excluded due to their caste or religion. Any savings people have are fast depleting with food prices rocketing.

Our partner organisations have reached out to us for help. These are partners who we trust, who we know are effective, ethical and frugalYour donation will help them to bulk buy rice and lentils so that there is enough food for at least one month per person. It will also provide soap and face masks to the most vulnerable.

Please join us in supporting them.

Click here to view the locations where iProbono’s partners are providing emergency relief.

What are our plans for long-term solutions?
This is an emergency that is unprecedented in recent history. Governments and civil society are responding as fast as they can, but the needs remain overwhelming.

Along with this emergency appeal, the iProbono India team are currently:

1. Advocating for Central and State governments to adequately provide for people in need
2. Collaborating with organisations to implement State schemes for the poor as quickly as possible to reduce the reliance on charity
3. Working on local media campaigns to debunk the myths around the pandemic and provide clear guidance

iProbono is an organisation focused on access to justice. Over the last 10 years, we have never made a request like this, but we are in extraordinary times.

Between the lockdown and state provision, there’s a gap we must try to fill, or many more people will die of hunger.

Please donate here to support them at this critical time.

“I earn 600 rupees ($8; £6.50) every day and I have five people to feed. We will run out of food in a few days. I know the risk of coronavirus, but I can’t see my children hungry.” – R Kumar*

Any questions? E-mail richa.oberoi@i-probono.in and millie.hawes@i-probono.in

* For more voices, go to:

BBC – India’s poorest ‘fear hunger may kill us before coronavirus’

New York Times – For India’s Laborers, Coronavirus Lockdown Is an Order to Starve

The Indian Express – Hunger a constant companion for those left without work or income

Photo Credit – Yashas Chandra.

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