The Advocacy Project is seeking $2,500 to help our partner, Backward Society Education (BASE), fight back against a devastating second wave of the coronavirus in Midwest Nepal. Drawing on its roots in the Tharu community, BASE will work in 60 villages and train volunteers to lead a prevention campaign, as well as deploy a mobile medical team to conduct rapid testing and provide emergency care. We hope to reach over 12,000 villagers and set up a system that could eventually support vaccinations.
The pandemic is devastating the Tharu people, one of Nepal's most vulnerable minorities. Infections in the villages of Dang District, where BASE works, are running at 30%, but villagers are unaware of prevention measures like social distancing. Masks are in short supply. Tests are expensive and beyond the means of most. Less than 40,000 people have received a first vaccination in the district (population - 548,000). Government health posts are overwhelmed. This deadly cycle must be broken fast.
BASE will address the current crisis while strengthening villages against future waves. Your support will enable BASE to deploy a mobile medical team, which conducts rapid testing in the villages (photos). BASE will also train volunteers in 60 villages to explain social distancing, facilitate vaccinations and coordinate ambulance visits. Finally, BASE will commission 6,000 face-masks from women tailors and provide front-line health posts with oximeters and personal protective equipment (PPE).
This appeal is a 2-month response to an emergency. But if BASE can take health care to 60 strategic villages and create a network of committed village mobilizers, it could lay the foundation for a sustained effort to manage an increase in vaccinations and build the resilience of the villages against future emergencies. BASE's credibility in the community will grow, along with the confidence of BASE staff. If these important outcomes are achieved, the project will be extended beyond 2 months.