- Ashley Stills
Last night Haiti declared a state of emergency. The country now has two confirmed cases of COVID-19. The ports, airports and borders are now closed. Schools, universities, churches and industrial parks are now closed. Starting today, they have implemented curfew from 8pm-5am.
Unfortunately, the COVID-19 will likely spread like wildfire in Haiti. Unlike the United States, they aren’t worried about toilet paper. They don’t use it, because they have never been able to afford to buy it. ￼
Haitians will most likely be worried about finding soap. Even if they can find it, they may be worried about affording to purchase it. According to World Bank, more than half the population lives under the poverty line of $2.41 per day.
Most Haitians immune systems are already severely compromised due to their living conditions. There are common shortages of food and medical supplies. Most do not have access to running water. Social distancing isn’t an option since they live in extremely small living spaces with multiple people.
Symptoms of COVID-19 are mild in about 85% of people who contract it. However, most of the families in our program are considered high-risk due to their socioeconomic status and compromised immune systems. Many Haitian people face malnutrition and don’t have access to basic necessities such as soap, clean water and latrines.
On Monday our midwives and staff will be holding small clinics and educating the community. We have a goal to handout 500 bars of soap and small bags of powered Clorox. We will also be print handouts in the community to educate on COVID-19, social distancing and how to prevent sickness. While you are reading this, it is most likely that our program director and midwives are out shopping for soap, Clorox and face masks.
We are estimating it to cost $750 to purchase enough soap and Clorox to give to the people attending our clinic as well as print handouts. Would you consider partnering with us to purchase supplies? This is an urgent need. You can give here, and choose “General/Wherever it’s Needed Most”.
Please continue to pray for everyone around the world. The world is facing great challenges and fear. More than ever, it is important to unite together and support each other.