In light of the quarantine restrictions, how have CBM’s partners adapted their existing projects?
Many of our partners have had to adapt their projects or put them on hold. One of our partners in Lebanon normally runs a camp for refugee children, but they had to stop their activities at the outset of the pandemic. To adapt to the restrictions, our partner developed online videos and innovative ways of reaching out to kids. This became very popular. In fact, they’ve been able to reach a lot more kids than they have before.
Many of our partners have moved workshops online, and they’ve found ways to connect with people to keep relationships going. I’m sure this process will continue as we look towards 2021 and the new context that we’re all working in.
How would you describe the impact of our work so far?
One of our earliest relief efforts was with our partner, KPM, in the Philippines. They work closely with some of the hospital staff there and noticed a shortage of masks and personal equipment. Also, due to the lockdown measures, most of the doctors and nurses were unable to return home. Many of them were sleeping in the hallways of the hospital and it was difficult to find food.
KPM invited CBM to join them in providing masks to hospital staff, which we secured through one of our partners in Asia. We were also able to provide meals for the doctors and nurses.
We later received a note from one of the nurses that basically said, “For many of us hospital staff, our main concern was not even for ourselves but for the patients that we serve – we didn’t want to put them at risk. So because you provided meals for us, as well as personal protective equipment, we were able to continue to work and help save lives. While we were the direct beneficiaries, we actually see our patients as beneficiaries of your project as well.” It was encouraging to hear how a project like this can have an impact that multiplies.