This is Bhavesh.
Bhavesh is a father, a husband, and he has always been willing to work hard to do anything necessary to give his family the basic things to survive. That’s why he spends most of his time away from the family he loves so dearly. He works in the city as a day laborer, sending most of what he earns back home and only visiting to spend time with them a few times a year.
Bhavesh’s world turned upside down when the Coronavirus lockdown was announced. He and hundreds of thousands of other workers had only four hours to pack their things and attempt to get home to their families. The consequences were awful. When the country closed down transportation services, migrant workers like Bhavesh found themselves walking for hundreds of miles to reach their villages. Several died trying to make the journey home. As the country struggled to enforce measures to protect people from violence, workers like Bhavesh felt forgotten and abandoned. They are part of the “invisible population,” a world most don’t even know exist. The rules put in place did not protect them.
Bhavesh was eventually blocked from crossing a state border, leaving his entire group of migrants with no place to go.
Thankfully, a nearby church stepped in.
One of our partner churches opened its doors for Bhavesh and the men he was with, giving them nourishing food and a safe place to rest. Not long after they arrived, several of the migrants developed a fever. Our team quickly constructed a makeshift isolation ward. Everyone recovered with supportive care and good nutrition.
We don’t know when these men will be able to continue their journey home to their loved ones, but until then, they have a safe place to shelter, and they are surrounded by a community that has made them feel valued.
This is a hard story, but it is also a hero story.
Bhavesh and millions of other migrant workers work hard to provide for their families. They’ve traveled so far, hoping to make it back home. Some will never see home again.
But for Bhavesh, the hardest of circumstances have made way for worlds to collide and for something beautiful to happen in the midst of struggle: community, compassion, dignity, honor, respect, and hope.
You can support men like Bhavesh in their time of need.
Stories are real, all names and photos have been changed for protection, and are representative.