In the past few weeks, Caritas Nepal has successfully reached 4743 HHs of 18 districts with food, hygiene materials and awareness support.
COVID-19 has terrorized the whole world leading to 275 thousand deaths and infecting almost 4 million from 215 countries all around world. At first compared to other countries, Nepal had no cases in the first 3 months. Later in the fourth month, the confirmed cases started with few now reaching 120 people (As per 11th May Govt. data). Along with virus widespread and food scarcity, people also started facing other problems. One of the major problems was lack of awareness in people about COVID-19 especially in the vulnerable rural areas where illiteracy is comparatively high than in other districts.
Therefore, Caritas Nepal initiated to conduct awareness activities addressing this gap for the prevention of pandemic targeting these most vulnerable areas.
For this, Caritas Nepal and its partner NGO’s, youth and child clubs, cooperatives, community and local government collaborated to spread awareness. Among 18 districts, three of the most vulnerable districts namely Dailekh, Surkhet and Jajarkot from Western Nepal were identified for awareness program.
Radio jingles, flex print installation, loudspeaker announcement, interaction and orientation program were effectively conducted ensuring awareness on preventive measures regarding the virus.
The youth member through loudspeaker announcement suggested people to stay safe at home and protect vulnerable age group especially old and young ones. People were updated on the status and requested to follow guidelines and appeal of government. Social distancing and safeguarding of vulnerable people to be adopted in every way. Importance of spreading message about hand washing and hygiene practices along with social distancing to combat the possible infections is a key thing we did to avoid the widespread.
(Everyday 15 episode are being aired reaching 1500 households)
300 posters and banners on COVID-19 has been printed and installed in several locations in coordination with local government.
In Surkhet, Caritas supported school children, elderly and people living with disabilities with hygiene kits. Orientation on preventive measures such as hand washing, use of mask, following Govt. rules, maintaining social distancing, taking care and helping children, elderly and people living with disabilities to maintain hygiene.
Interaction program was conducted in Bhagwatimai, Dailekh where flex print was installed for proper awareness and understanding of the local people.
Local masks were made and distributed in health posts for ensuring safety and prevention of spreading of virus and health workers were accessed with face masks for personal safety as well.
Caritas Nepal and IPM training students (SFFS) provided food support in old age home of Lamjung district. The shelter is home to 15 elderly people and facing food scarcity due to lockdown. Considering the need, the student visited the shelter and decided to provide 10 thousand worth food support in the shelter. The support included Juice and rice (IPM produced rice) which was handed over to the management committee of the shelter. In addition, the team also showed immense love and affection to the elders by preparing rice pudding themselves and feeding them.
Almost 40% of targeted households reached through food and non food emergency relief support.
In this way, CN has been creating positive impact on rural people and are maintaining social distancing during daily work. In this challenging time, safeguard of vulnerable people is most important. And Caritas Nepal’s focus is to ensure that people are safe following government appeals and guidelines regarding COVID-19.