British Jews and Asians join forces for emergency India Covid appeal

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British Jews and Asians join forces for emergency India Covid appeal

Jewish and Asian communities unite to raise funds amid hundreds-of-thousands of new cases reported a day across India

Ventilators arriving in Delhi, India, from the UK in response to the coronavirus crisis.
Ventilators arriving in Delhi, India, from the UK in response to the coronavirus crisis.

British Jewish and Asian communities have united in support of an emergency appeal amid the coronavirus crisis unfolding in India.

The British Indian Jewish Association (BIJA) has backed a fundraising campaign to treat the hundreds of thousands affected by the virus in the sub-continent.

This comes amid a huge surge in cases in India, with 320,000 reported on Tuesday, and 2,771 deaths, as the country’s healthcare system teeters on the brink.

The British Asian Trust’s Emergency Appeal, backed by BIJA, has already raised almost £93,000 since launching on the weekend, and seeks to provide oxygen for patients amid rapidly depleting supplies.

Backing the campaign, BIJA Co-Chairs Zaki Cooper and Dr Peter Chadha said: “We have all seen the distressing images in the media. People in India are suffering terribly and we wanted to do what we can to help. Our religions talk about the value and sanctity of human life. We know from our own communities’ experiences in the UK the devastation that Covid can bring. By supporting BAT’s appeal, we want to give an outlet for all those who wish to help India at this really hard time.”

The Asian Jewish Business Network is also supporting the appeal, with director Russell Behar, saying: “We are dedicated to help and support BIJA along with British Asian Trust Emergency Appeal with the very unfortunate escalating COVID situation happening in India, we need your help. Together we can help, together we can make a difference, together we can make a change.”

Hitan Mehta, Executive Director, British Asian Trust said: “We are delighted that BIJA is supporting our campaign. Already through the generosity of hundreds of donors, we have raised over £90,000 in since the weekend. Through mobilising the British Jews and British Indian communities, BIJA is demonstrating the universal principle of helping those in need, something promoted by all the great religions.”

For £50, the campaign can provide oxygen for 40 patients, while £450 can fund a low-flow oxygen concentrator to help 900. £830 will go towards a high-flow oxygen concentrator to help 550, for the most seriously ill.

You can donate here:

Or, through the British Indian Jewish Association, here:


Help perform the greatest mitzvah: save a life

While life in Israel has returned to normal and hopes are high that Britain is set for a summer without restrictions thanks to vaccines, for billions around the world there is no such imminent light at the end of the tunnel. In the majority of countries around the globe, particularly the poorest, the vaccine rollout has barely kicked off.

That's why Jewish News, the leading source of news and opinion for the entire UK community, is throwing its full weight behind UNICEF’s VaccinAid campaign by using this platform usually reserved for encouraging donations towards our own journalism to instead urge our readers around the globe to perform the greatest mitzvah: saving a life.

We have never before done this for any charity fundraiser but it's hard to recall a campaign that affects so many people, and indeed an entire planet aching for a return to normality. Just like the Chief Rabbi and Rachel Riley, we hope to boost the mission to deliver two billion vaccines, 165 million treatments and 900 million test kits around the world by the end of this year.

Please donate as much as you can, in the spirit of the Talmudic sages: “to save one life is to save the world entire”

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