As the coronavirus spreads, circumstances grow more dire for rural and nomadic peoples who already struggle to survive. The head of the World Food Program predicts "famines of biblical proportions" and, as they say in Niger, "an empty stomach has no ears." As food dwindles and prices soar, parents will not listen to governmental warnings to distance if it means letting their children go hungry. Keep communities safe with soap, hygiene training, & emergency food aid. YOU CAN SAVE LIVES.
Niger has had 696 cases of coronavirus since its first case - just over a month ago. The government took swift action to close borders, limit transit, close schools, and encourage people to remain at home and practice safe hygiene. Unfortunately, with borders closed and transportation limited, supplies are falling short and prices are rising. The primary concern in these communities right now is access to food. Communities cannot practice social distancing if they are facing starvation.
With your support, we can provide 6 tons of food across 6 different Nigerien villages - supporting thousands of rural Nigeriens in this moment of greatest need. We will also provide soap, washing stations, and training in hygiene practices to limit the spread of the virus. This is absolutely critical because with just 3,500 ventilators in sub-Saharan Africa, Niger cannot afford for the virus to spread in its most remote, vulnerable communities.
Typically, we work in these communities to create brighter futures through education and opportunity. If we do not help to feed these communities right now, there may not be girls to enroll in school, there may not be women entrepreneurs to grow economies... BUT if we can meet the communities' basic needs now, we can help them to grow and thrive and become more resilient in the future.