The team at AMS continues to check in regularly with our partners and stay informed regarding the impact of COVID19 on our projects. This week we have for you updates from India and Timor-Leste, where our partners are staying connected with their communities despite the challenges presented by this pandemic and the ensuing shutdowns.
We have also been busy communicating with our Marist communities in Melanesia following the devastating impact of Tropical Cyclone Harold. In Vanuatu there has been significant damage to both the Brothers house and the St Michel Technical College on the island of Espiritu Santo. AMS will be focussing our end of financial year appeal on supporting the recovery and rebuilding efforts in Vanuatu.
We will launch our appeal on 1 May and look forward to providing you with more information soon. Thank you to everyone who has sent messages of support for the AMS team and our partners during these challenging times. Please know that we are also holding all of you in our prayers and hope that you and your loved ones are safe and well.
A little good news! Helping the the most vulnerable people during the COVID-19 pandemic is not only the right thing to do, but the smartest thing to do.
Timor-Leste, as at 14 April 2020, has only 2 confirmed cases of Coronavirus. We have been informed by Mr Laurentino Guterres, Director of KATILOSA, that all public transport in Timor-Leste has ceased. However, this has not stopped KATILOSA staff conducting home visits to children and adults with disabilities. Having a disability in Timor-Leste does add to social isolation and having KATILOSA staff conduct visits, provides a connectedness that can offer them resilience in these challenging times.
While no physiotherapy is available to the children and adults due to safe distancing regulations, KATILOSA staff are able to check in on the well-being of clients and their families and provide advice on how to maintain therapeutic exercises and health during this period.
These visits are also an opportunity to educate children and their families about COVID-19 and to monitor their general health and help them access support if there is any concern about having contracted the virus.
After a directive was sent out for all tertiary institutions to close for up for a month, ICFP initiated contact with students through Facebook, WhatsApp and email. For those who did not have this access, lecture handouts were placed in easy to reach places.
Anyone coming into the building has to wash hands before entering and a person has been employed to continuously wash down surfaces with diluted bleach. From the 27th March 2020, all staff are working at home, caring for family and neighbours.
Facebook keeps information shared and is encouraging all members of the ICFP family. They are praying for the safety and well-being of you as well – information on the Timorese news helps to keep them informed about what is happening elsewhere in the world.
Trichy – India
Operation Rainbow, supported by Australian Marist Solidarity, was established in 2003 by the Marist Brothers to provide support to families and children affected by HIV.
Recently they celebrated International Women’s Day and in conjunction held a COVID-19 Awareness seminar. Trichy has been marked as a COVID-19 vulnerable zone and has been put under a watch for the next 14 days.
The COVID-19 awareness Seminar focused on the challenges women faced and how they can protect themselves and their family from COVID-19.