Preserve International has pivoted from some of our usual operations to address some of the immediate needs brought about by the COVID19 pandemic in Yumbe, Uganda. Over the next several months we are focusing on providing emergency food aid to the most vulnerable; PPE, soap and hygiene materials to market vendors, health centers and prisons to prevent the spread of COVID19; and hard to access seeds and farming tools in ensure a strong harvest later this summer.
The COVID19 pandemic as well as the government imposed restrictions aimed at preventing its spread have had a huge impact on food security & economic development in Yumbe. Home to over 270,000 refugees in the Bidi Bidi Settlement, a 30% reduction in food rations from the WFP has put the welfare of many at risk. Additionally, restrictions on movement are limiting access to seeds and farm tools needed to plant & a lack of PPE & hygiene materials is putting many on the front line in harms way.
We are taking 3 tiered approach to addressing some of the immediate needs brought about by the COVID19 pandemic in Yumbe, to Aid, Equip & Empower. We will first provide critical food Aid to those who need it most. We will also Equip market vendors w/ PPE & hygiene materials & provide seeds & farm tools to ensure a strong harvest later this summer. Finally, we will Empower people to make the most of their harvests through teaching innovative food preservation & effective post-harvest handling.
While as an organization we very much believe in a "teach a (wo)man to fish" mentality, desperate times call for desperate measure. In this time of crisis people simply need to eat & stay healthy while social distancing. We know that this pandemic is going to have negative consequences for food security & economic development in Yumbe, however it is our intention to limit that impact as much as possible by giving people the tools they need to weather this storm so they can continue their lives.