Supporting vulnerable children and communities during the COVID-19 crisis
In the shadow of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a socio-economic and child rights crisis developing at an alarming rate.
In March, UNICEF estimated that according to the $1.90 day international benchmark, 50 million people in sub-Saharan Africa have been pushed into extreme poverty since the start of 2020; the largest change ever recorded in a single year.
And when poverty rises at a household, community and national level, it is children who suffer the most.
Since the start of the pandemic, across the five countries where we work – Kenya, Malawi, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe – financial pressures have driven a rise in issues such as child labour, child marriage and early pregnancy. In Malawi, a staggering 40,000 teenage pregnancies (an increase of 26%) and 13,000 child marriages were recorded within eight months of the pandemic.
WHAT IS WESEEHOPE DOING?
At WeSeeHope, we are working with over 46,000 children and young people in isolated communities who were already vulnerable before the pandemic. Together with our in-country partners, we are using our community-led and skills-based approach, resources and expertise to mitigate the negative impacts on them by:
- Helping parents and guardians set up or diversify businesses through our Village Investors Program (VIP) so they are able to earn an income, ease increasing financial pressures in their households and build economic security.
- Teaching new income generating skills, including the making of face masks and soap to improve COVID-19 prevention measures, as well as enhancing those already in place.
- Strengthening child protection structures through existing program community volunteer networks, so children who are at risk of abuse or who have dropped out of school are identified and supported during this time.
HOW YOU CAN HELP
It is even more essential that education, child rights and economic empowerment interventions like ours continue to reach vulnerable children during the pandemic. To sustain our programs and the impact they have, we really need your support.
Thanks to your generosity and kindness, we have made it through a difficult year. But the longer the COVID-19 crisis has gone on, our ability to raise the money we need has been seriously disrupted. We are optimistic that this will start to improve in the next six months, but we can’t be on pause right now.
That’s why we would be so grateful if you could please help us get through this very difficult climate, and work with us to support vulnerable children, families and communities at this unprecedented time.
could help a community access clear, factual and updated information about COVID-19.
could teach a Kids’ Club how to make face masks from low cost and locally available materials.
could train a health task force set up through our Kids’ Club Program to make ‘tippy-tap’ hand washing stations, face masks and soap.
STAY UP TO DATE WITH OUR BLOG
COVID-19 UPDATE MAY 2021
Read our latest update about our programs during the pandemic.
“WOMEN MAKING DECISIONS IS A BASIC FOUNDATION AND IMPORTANT INDICATOR OF WOMEN’S EMPOWERMENT”
Learn from some of our partners about the importance of working with women, especially in light of the pandemic.