An elderly woman staring in happy disbelief at a large amount of food she is allowed to carry home. A mother crying with relief over powdered milk for a small child who had not had milk for days. A group of blind massage therapists exclaiming “thank you!” as they gather essential food items to take back to their hungry family members.
These are just a few of the hopeful sights World Renew staff witnessed as relief packages were distributed to 575 families in the Philippines who have been struggling because of a loss of daily wages as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
For this COVID-19 response project, World Renew partners identified and prioritized vulnerable beneficiaries such as elderly people, people with disabilities, nursing and pregnant women, rickshaw drivers, security guards, and farm labourers. Nearly half of the households that were given these packages had few other forms of support as the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Most of the families were living on an income of under 5,000 pesos per month (approximately $135 CAD) but then they lost their daily wages with the “stay at home” restrictions.
For the 575 recipient households, these food packages and hygiene items–funded by the ACT Alliance and the generosity of World Renew donors–have been a blessing and a lifeline during this difficult time. On their behalf, Jeff says with gratitude, “‘Madamo gid nga salamat!’ (Thank you very much)!”