Tata Steel Foundation combatting COVID-19 digitally at grassroots level of Odisha

Kalinganagar: Through the Tata Steel Foundation (TSF), Tata Steel has tried to remain ahead of the curve in its efforts to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. The Company has already attempted to bring communities on board ‘digitally’ and raise awareness.
The operational units of the Company located in Kalinganagar, Bamnipal and Sukinda have aligned with the District Administration of Jajpur and taken proactive steps to raise awareness and provide support towards prevention and mitigation of the pandemic.
The digital campaign which started from 23rd March onwards, was a concerted effort to inform people on critical issues including lockdown, its requirement, dos and don’ts and precautionary steps, thereby helping prevent panic within the communities.
This was actioned through a series of identified questions to the communities that brought to the table a set of queries, expectations and anticipation.
All of this was collated and looped back to the district administration to ensure that there was a seamless flow of communication from the district to the grassroots. All measures were undertaken as per State Government and World Health Organisation guidelines.
Through this effort, Tata Steel Foundation has reached out to 37 Gram Panchayats mostly in Danagadi and Sukinda blocks. It aims to reach out to more than 50 Gram Panchayats in the nearby areas through this Digital initiative.
Several issues that came up during the outreach programme included the need to expedite the creation of isolation centres, concerns regarding availability of food items, daily-wage earnings, transportation in case of medical emergency, price hikes during the lockdown period and availability of protective masks to name a few.
Apart from the elected members of Panchayatiraj Institutions (PRIs) like Sarpanch, Panchayat Samiti Member, Ward Member etc. , a similar exercise was conducted with 35
Accredited Social Health Activist (ASHA) workers to educate, empower and equip these frontline health-workers with necessary information to appropriately guide the community. Besides Odisha, the exercise has been rolled out to all 11 locations of Tata Steel’s operations as well as to communities along the Jamshedpur-Kalinganagar corridor.