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Microsoft raises over $3 m to back organizations working on ground in India

Microsoft raises over $3 m to back organizations working on ground in India
Friday 7 May , 2021
By Marwa Nassar - -

Microsoft has raised over $3 million (including Microsoft’s matched contribution) for organizations working on the ground in India, including Oxfam India and UNICEF through the company’s employee giving program.

Microsoft has seen the harrowing images of Covid-19’s impact in India. The entire country is reeling under the devastating impact of the pandemic.

Over the past month, Microsoft Philanthropies has been in close contact with nonprofit partners and government organizations leading the relief efforts in India to understand how it can best assist in the response.

Microsoft believes a coordinated approach is the best way to help and it is working in partnership with humanitarian organizations and others in the private sector.

Microsoft is joining hands with a number of other companies to help the US Chamber of Commerce and the Business Roundtable to launch the Global Task Force on Pandemic Response. This is a public-private partnership to provide India with critical medical supplies, oxygen and other life-saving assistance. This effort will focus first on India and will then be a vehicle to support other countries devastated by Covid-19.

Microsoft was one of the first partners to commit to this effort, and Microsoft President Brad Smith is serving on the Steering Committee for the group. It is also working to help lead the Task Force’s CHRO India Action group, sharing ideas and best practices for getting assistance to India-based employees.

Microsoft has also taken two steps to help address the severe shortage of oxygen for patients in India. As part of the Global Task Force on Pandemic Response, through a significant financial donation from Microsoft Philanthropies, it has joined with other companies to purchase 1,000 much-needed ventilators for hospitals in India. Second, as part of the Task Force, it is working with the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum and other companies to provide 25,000 oxygen concentration devices to health care facilities in India.

In addition to essential supplies, Microsoft knows that technology plays a key role in an effective response to the pandemic. As it saw in other countries in 2020, there is a strong need for technology tools that enable remote work, collaboration and communication across government and organizations working to respond to the pandemic. It is ensuring every commercial and government organization in India has free access to the full capabilities of Microsoft Teams as they respond to changing conditions on the ground. It has also activated the Microsoft Disaster Response Team to provide technology support to efforts combating the outbreak in India, who are in frequent touch with both government agencies and first responders in the country.

Moreover, Microsoft Philanthropies partnered over the last year with India’s first responder nonprofits and government organizations to provide humanitarian aid, personal protective equipment (PPE) to protect frontline health workers, high-performance testing equipment including a mobile testing bus, and research support.

It is building on this work to help mitigate food insecurity caused by sudden disruption of livelihoods and are continuing to provide medical assistance and PPE.

With escalating infections, hospitalizations and deaths being reported in several other countries, the crisis is reaching new and critical highs. Microsoft is engaged with other governments and humanitarian organizations to offer its support and its ready to do more.

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