The COVID-19 pandemic has affected everyone in the world community, with over 71.5 million cases and more than 1.6 million deaths. We at GRACE Cares offer our deepest thanks to everyone who gave to this project to support those dealing with the crisis. Funds raised allowed local heroes with Project Hearts (Dominican Republic), the Lucknow Project (India), and Kali to Kali (Rwanda) to address the COVID-19 pandemic in their communities. Although this project is fully funded, these organizations continue to support the people of the Baitoa region in the Dominican Republic, the Lucknow region in India, and the Kigali region in Rwanda in their struggle against the current pandemic. This initiative that you gave to improved the quality of life and health of these people and we are forever grateful for your generosity.
Below is a report from the field from Project Hearts (one of GRACE Cares’s partners in Baitoa, Dominican Republic that has been distributing bags of food to needy families during the coronavirus lockdown):
"The situation has been difficult. Not all the families are able to receive help, but we're sharing the food. The bags have been so important. Really, we see them as being life itself."
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The couple pictured above are two leaders from the Haitian community here in Baitoa. Using a loaned "community car," they helped to distribute bags of food to Haitian families each week throughout the Dominican Republic's quarantine period, and were also receiving a bag. I think they said they have six people in their home: them two, the woman's mom (who is older and not in good health), and three kids.
The economic impact of the virus on Haitian workers in the Dominican Republic has been the worst. The men usually don't have fixed jobs, and often work in construction whenever they can. They don't earn as much as Dominican workers, but tend to work at least twice as hard. These families struggled more economically even before work was halted for three months. When businesses did start reopening, it was only with limited numbers of employees, and the Haitian workers were not the first selected to return. Now they seem to be working normally again, but if the country does close down again—which is looking very likely—they will face more difficulties.
P.s. Look out for emails from GRACE Cares! This #GivingTuesday on December 1st on GlobalGiving (specifically for this project: https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/covid-19-relief-guatemalan-and-kenyan-communities/) we will be raising funds to help Community Finance Guatemala and the Watha Project (in Kenya) to address the COVID-19 pandemic in their communities. GlobalGiving as well as generous donors will be matching donations made to the project “COVID-19 Relief: Guatemalan & Kenyan Communities” on #GivingTuesday December 1st!
Meet Paulina (pictured above with her granddaughters that live with her)! She lives in the San Jose Adentro section of Baitoa, Dominican Republic. During the COVID-19 pandemic Paulina has been receiving bags of food from Project Hearts (one of GRACE Cares’s partners) to survive. Here is a brief interview that provides a window into her life and experiences during the time of the pandemic:
Q: How has COVID-19 personally impacted you?
A: It has impacted me a lot, since I’ve never seen a flu pandemic in the entire world like this, so this has been a big thing.
Q: How has it affected your family?
A: Some have been left without work, my children and grandchildren aren’t able to work, due to the virus.
Q: How has the virus impacted your community?
A: Well, thanks to God, there is nobody with cases of the virus in our neighborhood.
Q: How have the bags of food helped you during this time?
A: The food meant a lot to me, and I am grateful that they thought of me and helped me in this time of crisis.
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