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Announcing Aussie Tech for India: Joint Relief Program for the COVID-19 Crisis

Together with SafetyCulture, Airtasker, Airtree Ventures and Blackbird Ventures, we’re launching Aussie Tech for India – a joint philanthropic program to raise awareness and provide both financial and logistical support for the sourcing and purchasing of oxygen and other medical supplies in India.

The world is continuing to experience a global crisis never before seen. While many countries have commenced the rollout of vaccination programs, we still have a long way to go in returning to a sense of normality around the world. India, in particular, has reached a breaking point.

The evolving COVID-19 crisis is continuing to worsen at an alarming rate, with an average of 370,000 new cases being reported each day and the medical data projecting worse days to come. Across the globe, the pandemic has challenged society in ways we never could’ve imagined. Hundreds of thousands of lives have been tragically lost, millions of businesses have closed their doors and countless people have been both directly and indirectly affected.

While some parts of the world are beginning to return to a state resembling normality, we have both a social and moral responsibility to not turn a blind eye towards the crisis affecting our neighbors and community in India. As companies with global communities spanning every corner of the globe, the worsening crisis in India has been heartbreaking to watch, and with case numbers continuing to climb, swift and decisive action is needed to save lives.

Announcing Aussie Tech for India

In an effort to do our part in saving as many lives as possible, we’re collectively launching the Aussie Tech for India initiative in partnership with Medical Oxygen for All, a local organisation on the ground working to distribute oxygen supplies. The Aussie Tech for India campaign spans a number of tech companies and investment firms in Australia with the mission of raising awareness and providing both financial and logistical support for the sourcing and purchasing of oxygen and other medical supplies in India.

The Aussie Tech for India initiative includes Canva, SafetyCulture, Airtasker, Blackbird Ventures and Airtree Ventures. In under 24 hours, we’ve collectively pledged more than $400,000 towards crisis relief for districts in need, with the first batch of supplies arriving in India yesterday evening.

“The evolving COVID-19 challenges in India aren’t about a global shortage of oxygen – the challenge is economical. The medical supplies are out there – immediate and decisive action is required to save lives,” said Canva’s co-founder and COO, Cliff Obrecht. “We have both a social and moral responsibility to do as much as we can to support our community in India.”

“It’s imperative we support India’s critical care facilities as the situation escalates. I started SafetyCulture intent on finding a way to keep people in the workplace safe. We’re committed to this challenge everyday and eager to join the tech community in taking positive, pragmatic steps towards supporting this crisis,” added Luke Anear, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of SafetyCulture.

Starting today, all proceeds from media purchases on Canva will be donated directly to relief efforts in India, with a message appearing in the Canva editor helping raise awareness across the company’s global community of more than 55 million people. We’ve also launched a range of new India-specific templates with information from the local government and World Health Organisation to assist public health officials with sharing accurate and timely information.

“While each oxygen unit costs thousands of dollars, it only takes $92 to provide enough oxygen to save a life. We’ve been amazed by how quickly tech leaders in Australia have rallied together in response to the crisis unfolding in India,” adds Anish Sinha, a co-founder and coordinator behind the Medical Oxygen for All program.

“Our hearts go out to the people of India during this incredibly challenging time. One of our values at Airtasker is ‘people matter’ and we’re grateful to have the opportunity to work alongside Aussie tech companies to support the people of India,” adds Tim Fung, co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Airtasker.

“This is an incredible initiative. We are more than happy to support this work and hope together we can save some lives in India – a country that is a friend and neighbour of Australia,” said Daniel Petre, Co-founder & Chair at AirTree Ventures.

“The technology ecosystem is a global community. We all have a responsibility to come together and do what we can to help India during this health crisis,” added Rick Baker, General Partner at Blackbird Ventures.

We’ll continue to provide updates here and on social media on our progress as additional supplies are purchased and distributed to those in need.

The last 12 months have proven time and time again that our greatest strength stems from rallying together, for the true test of society comes from our response in the face of a crisis.