A Note from CEO, Kanika Bahl
In the face of COVID-19, protecting our staff, the communities we work in, and the people we serve are our highest priorities. Since the pandemic broke, our teams have been rapidly working to proactively identify challenges as they emerge, to understand the needs of our partner governments, and to implement preventative and responsive measures that leverage our existing networks and relationships. I am immensely proud of the support that we have provided thus far, delivering not only chlorine, but soap, disinfectant, and hygiene education to rural African communities, and supporting Indian state governments’ essential service provision and COVID-19 response.
We are grateful to all who have provided their support for these efforts – and encourage you to stay up-to-date on our global response to COVID-19. Though the threat from COVID-19 is immense, we cannot be distracted from the critical, lifesaving work that must continue to protect the health and livelihoods of the poor. At Evidence Action, our focus remains trained on the vital services – safe water access, deworming, iron and folic acid supplementation – we exist to support.
Migori County, Kenya: a delivery of chlorine arrives, ensuring community members will have access to safe water for the next three months.
Impacts of and Responses to COVID-19
In late March our Dispensers for Safe Water team rapidly mobilized to deliver 3 months worth of chlorine in just 2 weeks. We delivered 400,000 liters of lifesaving chlorine to 16,500 villages in rural Kenya, Uganda, and Malawi, ensuring an uninterrupted supply of safe water to 4 million people through June.
We determined how to springboard this network to distribute soap, disinfectant, and COVID-related hygiene messaging directly to communities. We were able to fund, buy, and deliver products directly to our communities, reaching the 4 million people we serve. Additional funding will expand the number of delivery rounds for these vital products. Read more about this project here.
The World Health Organization issued guidance to countries recommending postponement of mass treatment campaigns for neglected tropical diseases, such as intestinal worms, given the potential for campaigns to increase COVID transmission. We are working with partner governments to determine when deworming can safely resume; these timelines and decisions will be made country by country, and often state by state. Deworm the World supported deworming in Kenya, Nigeria, Pakistan, and India this year prior to the COVID-19 outbreak.
In India, school-based programs are on hold due to the current nationwide lockdown mandated by the Government of India. Our team is assisting five state governments to plan for and mitigate COVID-related challenges – including alternative modes for distributing iron and folic acid supplementation. Read our latest blog to learn more.
The Star Kenya explores how Evidence Action is mobilizing its supply chain and preexisting networks to support at risk communities in Sub-Saharan Africa with COVID-19 prevention efforts.
Soft Power News reports on Evidence Action’s response to COVID-19 in Uganda, which aims to provide 1.3 million Ugandans with access to safe water, soap, and disinfectant.
Outlook Poshan explains how Evidence Action has been assisting the government of India in tackling the prevalent issue of anemia, through deworming treatments and IFA supplementation.
The Life You Can Save explores how its recommended charities, including Evidence Action, are responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. You can also get the 10th Anniversary Edition of Peter Singer’s landmark book The Life You Can Save through their website – including a free celebrity-narrated audiobook – describing what all of us can do to address global poverty and featuring Evidence Action’s programs!