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New Delhi, June 29, 2020: 
Deepalaya, one of the largest NGOs of Delhi, won the prestigious World Humanitarian Award under the “Excellence in Social Welfare” category on June 28, 2020. The award came as an encouragement for the Covid-relief activities and online classes conducted by Deepalaya during the recent lockdown.

The award is considered prestigious as the World Humanitarian Drive received over 1600 nominations from 35 countries spread all over the world. The award consists of a medal and a citation. 

The virtual honoring ceremony held in London was telecast on YouTube with the participation of Chief Guests Fatmir Sejdiu, Former President of Kosovo, Madhav Kumar Nepal, Former Prime Minister of Nepal, Pedro I Altamirano, President of the National Assembly, Andalusia- Spain, and Abdul Basit Syed, the Founder Chairman of WHD. The session was moderated by Robin Marsh, Secretary-General of UPF (UK). 

During and after the lockdown, Deepalaya has been distributing free ration to the needy persons. With the help of organisations like the Australian High Commission, Zomato Feeding India, Western Union, Give India and individual donors, it has been able to support 12,850 families with ration and sanitization kits and 2,200 families with money transferred through bank accounts. Besides these organizations there were individual donors also who contributed to our cause and helped us in achieving our goal to serve the society.

The distribution was done not only by our staff but also by our community members.

Deepalaya teachers have been doing a commendable job in taking classes virtually, roping in parents as facilitators and ensuring that students revisit all old concepts that they had been taught. We are in regular touch with 7,000 students spread across various locations, including the urban slums of Delhi and the rural backward areas of Haryana, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh. 

Despite the fact that a large majority of our students do not have access to the Internet, lockdown did not prevent our teachers from teaching our students. This also mitigated risk associated with mental health to some extent. “The award is of international repute and has boosted the morale of the staff,”says Y. Chackochan, President of Deepalaya. 

Considering the kind of risk involved, the entire staff was also trained on protecting themselves from Covid. The teachers are also being trained every week to help them in resolving the issues that they face in virtual classrooms.

Deepalaya is a 41-year-old NGO set up by seven Keralites with operations in states like Delhi, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Maharashtra, Uttarakhand and Telangana. It is led by A.J. Philip as Secretary and Chief Executive and Jaswant Kaur as Executive Director.

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