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Jun 29, 2020

Empowered IDPs in business

Edith selling dry spices
Edith selling dry spices

This microproject, titled “Help Empower internally Displaced youths in Fako and Meme had as goal to support 15 youths who have been grossly affected by the current crisis by establishing small businesses for them, as a means to regain their dignity and boost their livelihoods.

After identifying the beneficiaries and drawing their business plans, the past three months has been marked with capacity building and disbursement of seed capital for establishment of projects by the identified population

09 internally displaced youths have so far received support in Fako, after being trained on business management, book keeping and menstrual hygiene. Funds disbursed have been used for the establishment of their businesses

Edith, one of the beneficiaries shares the following testimony

She has been able to add dry spices to her fried corn business as she was supported with the required sum of 100.000FCFA ($170). Formerly, due to the great number of people who rely on her for food and the small nature of her business, she could not do any form of savings as instead she was reducing money from her business capital to feed her family

“With the recent support, I have been able to do my business and register some savings as well.

I am extremely happy that I can now do my dry spices business, something I have admired for so long. This has enabled me forget all what I lost during the crisis. Thank you all for your support and may God continue to richly bless you, Edith testifies

Ayuk Doris also confesses of haven increased her food business as she now buys in bulk which is considerably lower than buying through retail. She has also been able to increase her daily savings from 1000 Frs daily ($1.5) to 1500 Frs Daily ($2.5). “I don’t have to rely on a man for my basic needs as I use to do

Thanks so much for your generous donations. It is and will continue to impact the lives of Cameroonian youths and better their communities. Your generosity goes a long way of curbing the crisis.  

Disbursement of funds
Disbursement of funds
Disbursement 2
Disbursement 2
Training on business management and savings
Training on business management and savings
Jun 26, 2020

Distribution of equipment in treatment center

Dear donors,

Cameroon has 12,000 confirmed cases, and the South-West 503, and 29 deaths, mostly concentrated in two cities, Buea and Limbe. Although the virus has evolved more slowly than in other places, its growth is accelerating, and there are very little resources to face this crisis.  We asked ourselves what could we do to support with the little we have, and we got feedback from the treatment center responsible for caring for most of the identified cases.

The problem is that we can only test 25 samples at once, it is an expensive procedure and we can't test less than that. So sometimes we wait for some time until we have the 25 samples. But we only have 2 carriers. So we take time from one place to the other carrying samples before we put 25 together and it delays the whole process.

And often they won't even isolate until they get those results, so this small thing is slowing the response and putting everyone at risk. So we need more flasks... just plastic boxes, like food flasks, that would do.

Another problem: we don't have enough clothes. So we have our scrubs to move around the treatment unit, and these are not supposed to leave the center. Now if I want to go to collect a sample I have to go to a different aisle of the hospital. I can go with my own clothes, exposing myself and my family to infection, or with my scrubs, exposing everyone else to infection. So we actually need more scrubs, to change them when we go to collect samples or do any other interaction in the hospital.

Two weeks ago, Reach Out donated 300 gloves, 150 surgical masks, 5  pairs of scrubs, 5 pairs of rubber shoes, 1 hand-washing station, 5 coolers and 8 flasks to the treatment center. We thank you for your support.

"If I don't have the right thing. I refuse to work. I won't put my staff at risk. I have to collect samples right from the persons' throat, I can't gamble. If I get sick who will take my place? We have very limited stuff. If I don't have I will stop working until I get it.

 How is it to fight COVID-19 in South-West Cameroon, in the middle of a civil war, and with so much disinformation? 

There is so much stigma, even in the hospital, there are doctors and nurses that avoid me. That's not very clever because my wife works at pediatrics, they should also be afraid of her. We have better protection than anybody else, and we follow strict measures, unlike everyone else in the hospital.

And there are so many rumours! People think that we have money because of corona, that the government is paying us per case. So far,  my salary has not changed since this thing started. 

What worries me the most is that people are avoiding all hospitals, and second, they are avoiding the government hospitals. The corridors are now empty. That is extremely dangerous. People are neglecting their diseases because of the fear of forced quarantine, which is a myth. I have not seen any case of tuberculosis in a couple of months. We used to always have at least some, we have not eradicated it. Someone is there, not treating a potentially mortal disease, because of fear of corona.

We need to continue fighting stigma.  I was so honoured to be invited to talk at a church last Sunday, we need more churches that engage in the COVID-19 sensitization. When people cannot trust information from the government they will turn to their church, and some churches are trying to help but are making it worse. I was so happy seeing that a church can invite a doctor to give their congregation the facts. 

This comment spurred the idea for our next activity - engaging 30 faith leaders with COVID-19 training, starting next week.

 

Thank you for supporting this project.

 

Other activities carried out on COVID:

 

Contact Tracing in 4 districts

Training of 40 humanitarian organizations

Support to 7 rural health centers with PPE

Awareness campaigns touching more than 100,000 persons so far

 

Other activities planned:

 

Donation of more PPE for health facilities

Direct Support to COVID-19 affected families

Capacity building for faith leaders, school principles, and journalists on COVID-19

Jun 3, 2020

June Report - Mah Di's Orphanage

Mah Di’s orphanage continues operating in the middle of the war and the COVID-19 crisis, and it is adapting to the new hygienic and health measures.

The Primary School remains functional. Most children are living in the orphanage, so there is not risk of outside transmission of COVID. Teachers respect hygenic measures at the beginning of each class.

However, the older children of the orphanage are no longer going to secondary school, for the last 3 months schools have stopped all over the country.

Students at Mah Di’s orphanage have taken up vocational training activities like hair-dressing, pastry-making, and sewing. This keeps the children busy and is a great means of acquiring skills out of the classroom. Mah Di’s Orphanage has also organized private mathematics classes and created a section for self-education of the students within the orphanage. These classes serve as revision forums and children help each other solve problems under the supervision of teachers and Mah Di. However, many different teachers are needed and there are not enough finances right now.

It is sad to note that the piggery was attacked by swine flu, and 25 pigs died. The two surviving pigs were sold and two new piglets of opposite sexes were bought to restart. The poultry farm is functioning,about 500 birds are being reared right now. A small extension of 30 birds was done. These are not for meat, but meant for producing eggs. The orphanage continues engaged in the cultivation of green vegetables for sale and consumption. Each new farming project is an opportunity for the children to learn valuable skills and get in touch with nature. 

Some well-wishers have donated foodstuff such as plantains, rice beans, biscuit, soybeans and juice to the orphanage, as well as cash.These donations have served as a complement to the food stock of the orphanage.

You might have noticed some changes in the project description. After reviewing the current needs of our supported social centers, we have agreed with them to focus on supporting their efforts to keep their children educated in this very difficult context of civil war. Most funds will be used to help the centers pay teachers’ salaries so education can continue even with their reduced resources.

Upcoming donations will be used to recruit private teachers for the children of secondary school level, so even if they are not going to school they can keep learning. We will also continue paying the primary school teachers with your support. 

 

Words from Mah Di:

Thank you for your continuous support, especially in paying the salaries of the primary school teachers and also for assisting us with daily bread in the midst of the pandemic and ongoing crisis.Thanks again and may God continue to bless ALL our donors.

 
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