Oct 26, 2020

and we are still living in special times ...

Hope, capacity, community in COVID times,
Hope, capacity, community in COVID times,

Dear friends and supporters of Operation Mercy, 

we are living in special times, in a season of change - a few months ago we thought it might be short term redirection, some quick interlude of different activities as we support communities in 19 nations to build hope, capacity and community. 

Now it is 8 month, since i last was able to visit face to face with one of our project teams, and no change in sight, while the first initial wave of shifting from community development to COVID 19 relief work is finished and brough many positive encounters and led to new connections and understanding of ourselves, our partners and the communities we work and live in, we need to start adjusting not only short term but long term strategies. 

Our project teams are now starting to reengage in the community projects, with adjusted activities, outcomes and the added goal of building awareness and resilience towards the effects of COVID 19 medially as well as psycho-social and economically. 

In one of our maternal health projects, they now use life size dolls to demonstrate the birthing process, and how to support a woman in labour, so that the course participants don't need to touch each other and risk spreading the virus. Group size in most projects have been reduced, hand washing and hygiene lessons more important than ever before. 

With all that we need to look forward plan for the new future

Economic development, livelihood and food security projects will be more important than ever in the coming years, girls and children with disabilities will be even more vulnerable to drop out of school early, due to lack of family funds for school fees, clothing, shoes, books ...

So more than ever we are "building planes  in the air" adjusting ongoing projects, adjusting our internal organisational development programme and adjusting the future plans to engage in new countries and communities. 

While we adjust, we do not give up! We still see the need and the "call" to be at the forefront of building hope, capacity and community In our region. 

One of our core values is perseverance and persevere we will. Others is prayer and partnership - as people of different faith in Operation Mercy, we all trust that God has a plan for mankind, and that in partnering with each other across boundaries, and partnering with you out there we will build hope, capacity and community. 

Thanks for standing with us. 

I’ll end by sharing the link to a poem from Rumi, a Persian Poet – we recently reflected on, on our webpage – have a look at the link below. 

Yours Andrea 

vocational training more important then ever
vocational training more important then ever

Links:

Sep 15, 2020

help for Refugees in Northern Iraq

Dear friends

 

a few weeks ago GlobalGiving gave us an extra gift for this project to support our work in the refugee camps in Northern Iraq.

 

Today I received back the first report from our team there, the first group we were able to support with specific items needed during the COVID 19 crisis were the participants of our Disability programme.

"The first thing we did was providing the families we serve a food and hygiene kit as a Covid-19 response. We were able to provide kits for 65 families spread over 7 camps. The packages differed in size tailored to the number of family members and based on the family's income. We asked how each client has been doing and we were able to hear their stories and encourage them.

For many this season has been difficult as their income has decreased. Some families work in the fields and because of lockdowns were not able to sell their crop for a good price. Others could not work at all during lockdowns or lost their jobs. One family had hardly any food left and finished their last rice a few days before we came. Imagine the joy of this family when they received 20 kilos of rice plus other food items.

Now it's time to continue our physical therapy program. Unfortunately, due to Covid-19 we cannot start our peer groups bringing different clients and their families together. However, we can visit them apart from each other in their homes and work on their physical improvement and bring encouragement. It has been encouraging to see that some clients have improved quite a bit physically since the last time we met. We'll continue to come along side working for better integration into their community."

 

Other parts of the GlobalGiving funds went to Kazakhstan and Afghanistan - watch this space for more updates soon.

 

Thanks for being a hope giver with Operation Mercy

Yours Andrea Vogt

International Director.

Sep 15, 2020

Distribution and relaunching the project

Due to Covid-19 we were not able to continue our project and had to put it on hold for several months. Recently restrictions have been eased in the Kurdish Region of Iraq and we relaunched our project. We received extra funds from GlobalGiving and the first thing we did was providing the families we serve a food and hygiene kit as a Covid-19 response. We were able to provide kits for 65 families spread over 7 camps. The packages differed in size tailored to the number of family members and based on the family's income. We asked how each client has been doing and we were able to hear their stories and encourage them.

For many this season has been difficult as their income has decreased. Some families work in the fields and because of lockdowns were not able to sell their crop for a good price. Others could not work at all during lockdowns or lost their jobs. One family had hardly any food left and finished their last rice a few days before we came. Imagine the joy of this family when they received 20 kilos of rice plus other food items.

Now it's time to continue our physical therapy program. Unfortunately due to Covid-19 we cannot start our peergroups bringing different clients and their families together. However, we can visit them apart from each other in their homes and work on their physical improvement and bring encouragement. It has been encouraging to see that some clients have improved quite a bit physically since the last time we met. We'll continue to come along side working for better integration into their community.

 
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