Covid-19 has brought about Enhance Community Quarantine (ECQ) in Manila. Although this is good in flattening the curve it has caused other problems such as hunger because people cannot go to work or have no money to buy food to feed their families. We are inviting you to help us give direct food access to families with children and elders in the poorest communities in Manila. We have started giving food packs and hot meals through our community kitchen implemented by our community partners.
SPECS theme this year is #BeyondLimits. We want to go beyond the limit of a small and traditional Social Welfare and Development Agency (SWDA) by improving our programs and creating innovative ways to reach out to the children at risk, as well as their families and communities.
When the lockdown started, our team was prepared. We anticipated the effects not just to our organization but to the people we are serving. One week after the lockdown, when all the other SWDAs have closed, we bought medical, hygiene and food supplies. We started packing and created ways how to ensure that we give the “care packs” and financial aidto the families who need it the most. Out of the total number of individuals we served, 55% are children.
Children are at-risk. They are directly affected by hunger, lack of schooling, and loneliness. For children who live in the slum, lockdown can be traumatic. They are contained in an environment that only distances them further from an ideal childhood. In addition to the disease, we are also concern about the isolation and possible child abuse that brought about by the stress of daily survival their parents have to face.
This is going to be a marathon. This is just the beginning. There are still many months to walk through, and many families may not make it without our help. Our local government unit, in goodwill, is doing the best that they can, but resources are limited. If we all work together, all of us who are able and willing, alongside the poor, we will all go beyond COVID-19. No one will be left behind.