The coronavirus pandemic has caused an unprecedented global emergency and has brought acute food shortages to many. National lockdowns and social distancing have disrupted work and incomes. In India’s rural areas, where the majority are daily-wage workers, the sudden loss of income to those already living hand-to- mouth has been catastrophic. In addition, the closure of all schools has meant that those children most in need have lost the daily nutritious meals and snacks they normally receive in school.

The Cuomo Foundation has been active in building and supporting schools for disadvantaged children in the Tamil Nadu state of Southern India since 1999.The current lockdown situation in India has seen the closure of all seven of the educational compounds that the Foundation continues to support across the region. The schools support vulnerable communities in both inner city and rural areas. Cuomo Foundation Scholarships are awarded to gifted children and young adults.

Working in collaboration with the Diocese of Chingleput, operational partner for our schools, we have launched a food aid relief project to those impoverished communities in rural areas. Essential food packages have been distributed to over 1,000 families most severely affected.
These measures focussed on three of the rural communities where we have school compounds- Mambakkam, Sendivakkam and Kovalam. This time, the initiative went beyond the school environment and identified and supported the most vulnerable in the wider communities.

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