BUILDING COMMUNITY - COVID-19
Nestled in the slums of a Kenyan coastline city lays a 6-unit housing development built by HOPE for vulnerable ladies. COVID-19 has brought both frightening realities and inspiring opportunities to this community of six families.
The frightening realities which are related to the loss of work and the necessity of finding ways to feed their children who have all been sent home from school rattled their sense of well-being. They had left the streets in search of meaningful employment and had found work in fulfilling ways: hair salon, selling vegetables, manager, selling supplements and a ‘peer’ educator for street ladies. All incomes now evaporated with government measures to address Covid-19. How were they to now feed their families?
Sudden storms often create space for inspiring opportunities. Joyce, our manager, gathered the ladies together to discuss the pending crisis. Their county, Kilifi, leads the country in corona cases. The ladies were afraid, yet they were ignoring the quarantine protocols laid out by the government. The first opportunity was that of ‘educating’ the families about Covid-19. Washing frequently and social distancing when in the market became their practice.
The second opportunity was that of having these ladies share their fears and needs. Food shortages, paying their electrical bill and keeping their children safe where their top priorities. Joyce sent HOPE a budget to cover these expenses and we responded immediately in the following ways:
- We purchased bulk food lasting for one month which was divided between the six families
- We paid their monthly electrical bill
- We purchased a large pressure cooker which would reduce the consumption of expensive charcoal by 70%
- We purchased a months supply of charcoal.
- We purchased books for the children to read as there is a curfew to keep them indoors.
From continents away, Canadian donors were able to make an impact on the lives of these special families. These families know that we are truly IN THIS TOGETHER!