SEATTLE, Washington — COVID-19 has rapidly spread across the world. Governments are stepping in to provide support to their citizens. However, many parts of the world are unable to effectively reach people living in rural or other remote areas. For undocumented citizens, those living in refugee camps or people struggling with homelessness, the pandemic can be more deadly since healthcare is extremely limited. As a result, nongovernmental organizations are going to communities with vulnerable people that the governments have been unable to reach. NGOs fighting COVID-19 are working in different countries all over the world, giving hands-on help to people by making hygiene kits, sending sanitizer, building hospitals and so much more.
Action Against Hunger
Action Against Hunger is a non-governmental organization providing essential healthcare in remote areas of the developing world. As COVID-19 spreads, Action Against Hunger is working on the ground in rural Somalia to provide healthcare and food. For NGOs fighting COVID-19, social distancing isn’t an option. In communities like the Kahda Displacement Camp in Mogadishu, Somalia, tens of thousands of people are living in makeshift houses close together. The residents suffer from hygiene and sanitation issues that go hand in hand with overcrowding. As the pandemic spreads, vulnerable displaced people find themselves even more exposed. Action Against Hunger
is working inside these communities to provide them with face masks, hand soap, gloves, handwashing stations and water sanitation. The organization is also working to provide much-needed food and nutritional support for those fighting famine.
Amnesty International has proven its commitment to human rights, especially in the face of a global pandemic such as COVID-19. This group is one of the NGOs fighting COVID-19 by making sure that the Indigenous population of Colombia has the necessary tools for survival since the government hasn’t been able to. The Indigenous people had still not received any aid after three weeks of quarantine. These rural communities had no word of when they would receive essential food and medical supplies. Amnesty International
calls this a human rights violation due to the ongoing isolation of the Indigenous community getting government support before the pandemic. The organization continues to support the Indigenous people currently testing positive for COVID-19 by delivering supplies.
Dăruiește Viață Association (Give Life Association)
Dăruiește Viață Association
is working with communities across Romania. The group is in the process of building the first-ever hospital in Romania using only donations. Currently, the association is building a brand new annex to a hospital in Bucharest to treat COVID-19 patients. According to the ministry of health, the hospital will be fully functional within a month. The NGO continues to work tirelessly across other parts of Romania as well. To date, 16 hospitals across the country have received necessary medical equipment from Dăruiește Viață Association. This includes PPE and ventilators. As the COVID-19 pandemic grows, the group remains vigilant to ensure remote groups across Romania have the healthcare support they need to treat as many patients as possible.
Danish Refugee Council
Though it’s headquarters are in Denmark, the Danish Refugee Council works in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Europe. The Danish Refugee Council
is one of the NGOs fighting COVID-19. It is implementing safety measures on both local and regional levels. The group currently is working to provide sanitation equipment to refugee camps. This includes setting up handwashing stations and information booths and distributing hygiene kits. The Danish Refugee Council believes in supporting vulnerable refugees and other displaced people. The COVID-19 pandemic leaves many people vulnerable to disease, especially those living in remote areas without nearby access to hospitals or other healthcare. By providing refugees with hygiene kits and other safety measures, it ensures the people living in close quarters have a better chance of fighting the disease
The Uday Foundation is based in Delhi and helps bring COVID-19 care kits
to people living on the streets in India. One of the group’s goals is to feed at least 50,000 people and give out 200,000 hand sanitizers and soaps. For the homeless population, social distancing can be nearly impossible. The only resources for many people have been the community and relationships they’ve developed with each other. When searching for food, those living with homelessness are not always able to ensure their meal is sanitary. This increases the risk of spreading COVID-19. As the disease spreads throughout India and businesses continue to close, it leaves homeless people without shelter. The Uday Foundation
takes donations directly to create hygiene care kits for India’s vulnerable homeless population and gets them the help they need directly.
There are NGOs fighting COVID-19 all over the world. These groups are made of individual people making incredible strides to help slow the spread of COVID-19. The pandemic has spread across the world, leaving countless people without sufficient ability to quarantine themselves. Even before the pandemic, people all over the world found themselves struggling for adequate access to healthcare and sanitation. NGOs fighting COVID-19 can provide support in cases where the government is unable. The people working in NGOs are often volunteers in the community, prepared to do on-the-ground grassroots care.
– Asha Swann