India’s economy was already staggering before COVID-19 made a bad situation worse. The World Bank announced yesterday that the Indian economy will likely shrink by 3.2 percent in the current fiscal year. The previous fiscal year saw a 4.2 percent decrease. An economic hit to Asia’s third-largest economy would have global ramifications.
Erik Morsehead of Mission India says the coronavirus and lockdowns have taken their tolls on Indian day laborers. “A lot of these individuals, when they work, that’s what they bring home to eat and there’s not a lot of savings…. Obviously, if they can’t buy food, that impacts stores being able to sell things, which obviously leads to a lot of things economically.”
Mission India has been distributing Relief Kits through local Christian partners to families in need. Each relief kit provides four weeks of food and hygiene supplies to a family of four.
With the support of believers around the world, Mission India has distributed 26,000 Relief Kits so far.
“Since we’re working with our partners on the ground in India, they’re sourcing all the materials and building the kits in their regions,” Morsehead says. “So the kits may vary depending on if rice is more prevalent in that area versus another area, it could be something else. They’re very local generated. It’s not us sending things to India. It’s Christian Indians, our partners, sourcing materials.
“Then it’s being passed out to the community-at-large – Christian, non-Christian, it doesn’t matter. We’re there to help provide relief and share the love of Jesus through that interaction.”
Morsehead says he recently heard a story of how one of their Relief Kits blessed a whole family. Mission India runs Children’s Bible Clubs in India, and one of their leaders wasn’t sure where his next meal would come from during the pandemic.
“He lives with his father and his mother and his sister, and both parents work as daily laborers. Daily laborers are the ones that are being hit the hardest so they have no money, no job, no support, but they kept on praying, ‘God, provide something for us. We are hungry.’
“When one of our partners started passing out these Relief Kits, the Children’s Bible Club leader’s family was blessed with one of those. He responded, ‘It is indeed a miracle in my life,’ and he went on to thank the partners for what they’re doing.”
Then, Morsehead asks, “Be praying for the nation of India. There are 1.3 billion people and healthcare is not as accessible as it is here in the US. So be praying for people’s health — and that is not just their physical health, but their spiritual health and their emotional health.
“For our partners, be praying that they will be kept safe and be given boundless energy as they serve in a new capacity.”