Communities Overcoming COVID-19
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed all of our lives. However, as in any crisis, it is the vulnerable who are most impacted, and the communities we work with are some of the most vulnerable in the world. They are not as equipped to ride out the coronavirus storm as we are.
As the virus continues to spread, communities need to know how best to try to protect themselves and their neighbours. As the lockdowns and economic consequences continue to impact movement and incomes, families need to build even greater resilience to get through these extraordinary times. As life changes and tensions rise, people need access to services, and communities need stronger systems to keep at-risk people safe.
Part of our identity as Christians and a part of the Anglican Church is to help those in need. To love and care for the sick, poor and vulnerable is our mandate. Throughout the gospels, Jesus was known for his love of the vulnerable, and he told us to be a community of people who do the same. (Click here to read our Bible study on this topic)
In Kenya, Mozambique, Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands, we are working with our Anglican church partners to deliver programs that will help prevent the spread and lessen the secondary impacts of the pandemic. These partners know and are an integral part of their communities, are trusted and can mobilise extensive community volunteer networks.
Below are some examples of how our partners in Kenya and Mozambique are making an impact. But there is so much more. To read about all of our partner responses, click here.
With your support, our partners can continue their work to prevent the spread and mitigate the ongoing impacts of this virus in their communities. With your support, lives will be saved and transformed.
Kenya: Overcoming COVID-19
Our Imarisha Maisha program and our partner in Kenya, the Anglican Church of Kenya – Mount Kenya West Diocese (ACK), has a long history of effectively equipping and giving people the information they need to live healthier, safer and more secure lives. This is particularly important in preventing COVID-19!
Voluntary community leaders called Nyumba Kumis (Swahili for ‘Ten Houses’) and Community Health Volunteers are key people in the community who are trusted and who people turn to for help. They have been trained by ACK to help their communities overcome issues like family breakdown, gender violence and child abuse. These volunteers are connected to and look after 10 household each.
Now, they are also helping to prevent the spread of COVID-19, tasked with ensuring the local people in their towns have good hygiene understanding. Their presence in the community will also allow ACK to identify vulnerable households who are in greatest need of protection and support.
Providentially, a local group that ACK supported with economic development training has been working on a project for a while now – making soap! This group is particularly inspirational as each member is either living with a disability or is a caregiver for a family member who has a disability. The group is now also teaching other women’s groups to produce soap; essential for household use while also bringing much needed income.
Their proud and inspirational motto is ‘Disability is not inability’. They have all experienced a lot of discrimination and many missed opportunities, but they will not let this stop them! And now they are contributing to the community effort to prevent and overcome COVID-19 in a vital way.
The group wanted to pose for the photo (taken before social distancing) to show you they are united, proud of who they are and what they are achieving with your support!
Mozambique: Overcoming COVID-19
Our Towards Abundant Life program and our partner in Mozambique, the Missionary Diocese of Nampula, has been working towards the goal of improving health knowledge and access to services for many years now!
Preventable illnesses are being reduced through the dedicated work of community health educators who come together in groups called Equipas de Vida (Portuguese for ‘Life Teams’). These educators are Anglican church volunteers who are dedicated to improving the quality of life of people in their communities.
These teams are trained by Adeptos (Portuguese for ‘Supporter’), who have often started as volunteers themselves. Once trained, the Equipas de Vida inform their home communities about the best way to look after their health.
These Life Teams are so highly respected that the Missionary Diocese of Nampula and their Life Teams initiative, are now a recognised part of the Government of Mozambique’s official COVID-19 prevention response plan. It stands as a testament to our program and their commitment to be recognised in this way!
Please donate to ‘COVID-19 – Communities Overcoming’ via the button below (select the first choice ’01. COVID-19 – Communities Overcoming’ in the drop down menu on our donate page).
Otherwise, you can call us on 1800 249 880, or send us a cheque/money order (made payable to Anglican Overseas Aid) to the address below.
Anglican Overseas Aid
PO Box 389
Abbotsford, VIC, 3067