It is absolutely amazing how quickly things have changed in the last week. I've been home from Lima for 6 days, and in that time - the world has significantly shifted.
On March 15, in a televised national address, Peruvian President - Martin Vizcarra - declared a State of Emergency for the next 15 days. All borders (land, air, sea, and river - think Iquitos) are closed; and all people in the country are on mandatory quarantine.
As a part of the "obligatory social isolation" - one family member can leave their domicile at a time to buy food and groceries, medicine, or go to the hospital. The only other movement allowed under the restrictive quarantine is commuting to and from work. Now, let me connect the dots on this situation - all restaurants, schools, and small businesses are closed. Even public parks, community gatherings outside and beaches are off limits and closed!
I don't think one can stress strongly enough how great an impact the COVID-19 pandemic will have on the world economy. This is particularly true for the people living in the experience of poverty. This is particularly true for the families in our Ines Project.
We are working overtime to ensure the people we serve have access to basic resources Our team is out-and-about delivering medications (we are on humanitarian outreach and allowed to move about outside of the quarantine), food, basic supplies and assuring every person has a clear plan and a communication mechanism.
The government of Perú is acting in an extremely responsible and proactive way. I applaud them for their measures. I am, however, very aware that the quarantine will greatly affect the economy, many businesses (small and large) and millions of people who work in the informal economy . . . without work they will have no access to income and resource
We will work tirelessly to assure people living on the edges of society are supported We will building bridges over the coming weeks. Please join us - be a bridge.
We are in this together. Be safe. Be compassionate. Be kind.
Please stay connected. Drop us a message and let us know how you are doing - firstname.lastname@example.org
The HBI Blog is a rotating journal from our staff. Our Blog is a series of messages from the field, insights from our work, and lessons in service.