Sydeny, age 6, Zambia

How the coronavirus is affecting sponsored children

How the coronavirus is affecting sponsored children

How the coronavirus is affecting sponsored children

COVID-19 Sponsorship Updates

We’re living in an unprecedented time – the coronavirus pandemic impacts all of us and the situation is changing from hour to hour. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed and out of control.

But now more than ever, we need to remember that we are not helpless. Each one of us has the power to care for and protect the people around us – and for those who are more vulnerable and less able to seek the help and care they need. Together we can turn the tide.

In each sponsorship community where we work, our staff and community partners are closely monitoring and updating us on the coronavirus situation. Below, you’ll find updates from each sponsorship country about how we are responding to keep children and families safe.

Looking to learn more information?  We’ve answered some frequently asked questions about how COVID-19 is impacting child sponsorship. Learn more.

Armenia

In Armenia, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Armenia has confirmed 172,058 cases of COVID-19 and 3,192 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). A State of Emergency imposed in March 2020 to contain the spread of COVID-19 was lifted in mid September. However a border conflict with Azerbaijan that erupted soon after has displaced tens of thousands of people and made the COVID-19 response very challenging. A ceasefire was signed in November 2020, but one in three children in Armenia live in poverty, leaving many vulnerable to the impacts of the COVID-19 crisis and the conflict. In addition to launching an emergency response to respond to the needs of children and familied affected by the conflict, World Vision has worked to reach 9,200 people directly with our COVID-19 response, including 5,300 children, and 27,000 people indirectly with information. We have been working to prevent the spread of the virus by sharing hygiene and prevention messages through social media and other online channels, distributing handwashing and hygiene kits including soap and masks to vulnerable families and kindergartens, and partnering with faith leaders to share COVID-19 information with their communities. We have helped strengthen health systems by providing online COVID-19 training and medical supplies like masks and thermometers for health workers. We have supported children impacted by COVID-19 by distributing food packages to vulnerable children, mapping children not currently receiving an education and sharing the information with the Ministry of Education, securing internet access for vulnerable children so they can access online education platforms, training frontline workers on child protection, and connecting children with online social workers and psychologists when needed. Now, we are focused on child protection, providing socio-psychological support and services and child friendly spaces to directly reach 19,000 children, parents, health workers and other community members over the coming year, as well as continuing to provide food assistance, hygiene supplies, and emergency shelter for children and families affected by the conflict. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19 and the conflict.

Bangladesh

*Bangladesh is one of 28 countries that World Vision is targeting with an increased multi-million-dollar emergency response that will reach at least 72 million people, half of them children.

In Bangladesh, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

A total of 545,831 cases of COVID-19 and 8,400 deaths have been confirmed in the country of Bangladesh (as at 1 March 2021). The government imposed a national shutdown in March 2020, restricting people’s movement, closing schools, markets and shops, banning public gatherings and imposing a night curfew. The restrictions were extended until August 2020, and made it very challenging to provide much needed assistance to communities struck by Cyclone Amphan which hit the region on 20 May 2020, affecting more than 387,000 people. The curfew and local travel bans have been lifted but masks are mandatory. World Vision is now transitioning from our emergency focus into response and recovery programming along with our usual long term development work. Our assessments show that livelihoods and food security are growing needs because of the secondary impacts of the pandemic, so we are continuing to provide cash and emergency food supplies for vulnerable children and their families, as well as increasing financial services inclusion and social protection, and helping families to grow vegetables gardens for food and income at home. Health, nutrition and water, sanitation and hygiene continue to be a priority. We are providing local communities and health workers with personal protective equipment like masks, gloves and sanitiser, as well as handwashing facilities, hygiene kits and COVID-19 prevention information. We are also assisting local health services to provide COVID-19 testing and treatment, as well as antenatal and postnatal care, assisted birth, and nutrition supplements for children under two. Education and child protection are also important parts of our work. We are providing psycho-social and counselling support to children and their families, equipping parents to support their children, linking families with the knowledge and assistance they need to prevent child labour, children marriage and school dropout, and strengthening community reporting and referral of violence and abuse. And we are continuing to work with government and other organisations to advocate for critical services for the most vulnerable people, including children, women, refugees and people living with disabilities. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

China

*China is one of 28 countries that World Vision is targeting with an increased multi-million-dollar emergency response that will reach at least 72 million people, half of them children.

In China, currently 70% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19 and 30% are able to work without restrictions.

The country of China was the epicentre of the COVID-19 outbreak and there have been 101,878 confirmed cases and 4,843 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). There are still restrictions in parts of the country and strict control measures are quickly put in place in local areas when outbreaks occur. World Vision aims to reach 1.35 million people with our response including 127,000 children who are sponsored. In the areas where children are sponsored, we have been working to provide health messages and hygiene kits including soap and towels to families, promoting sanitation and hygiene awareness through schools and children’s centres, building water systems and handwashing facilities in schools and communities, and providing local health workers with personal protective equipment like masks and gloves. In other highly affected areas, including Wuhan, we have provided hygiene and disinfectant supplies and COVID-19 prevention messages in children’s centres and social welfare institutions, supplying medical equipment to hospitals, providing health workers with personal protective equipment, and training teachers and social workers on psychosocial support and child protection. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Cambodia

In Cambodia, currently 7% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19 and 93% are able to work without restrictions.

The country of Cambodia has confirmed 805 cases of COVID-19 with no deaths (as at 1 March 2021). In response, the government initially closed schools, banned public gatherings of more than 50 people, suspended public transport, and closed land borders with Thailand and Vietnam. Restrictions have now eased and all schools were reopened in December 2020, though face masks and social distancing are still required in public. World Vision is now transitioning from our emergency focus into response and recovery programming along with our usual long term development work. We have been working to limit the spread of the virus and strengthening health systems by sharing prevention messages in communities and through faith leaders, providing households with hygiene supplies like soap, constructing and maintaining water sources, training community health workers, and supplying health workers with personal protective equipment like masks and gloves. We are now focused on protecting children from the secondary effects of the pandemic. We are strengthening food security and livelihoods by providing food and cash for the most vulnerable households and helping parents to learn new skills to increase their family’s income. We are helping children to continue their education with home learning materials and support as schools reopen. We are also collaborating with the government and other community organisations to strengthen child protection in the communities where we work. And we are continuing to help children and their communities stay healthy with ongoing health and water, sanitation and hygiene projects, including COVID-19 prevention activities. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Georgia

In Georgia, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial COVID-19 restrictions.

More than 270,758 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 3,510 deaths have been recorded in the country of Georgia (as at 1 March 2021). The government initially declared a State of Emergency and schools and all businesses except pharmacies and food markets were closed. The State of Emergency was lifted in May 2020 and most restrictions eased, with some schools reopening in October 2020. New restrictions including a curfew, public transport restrictions and business closures were introduced in November 2020 because of new outbreaks, but these have been eased since February 2021, though a curfew is still in place. World Vision is now tackling the secondary effects of the COVID-19 pandemic through recovery-focused programming, alongside a continuing response aimed at limiting the spread of COVID-19 and strengthening local health systems to cope with the virus. We aim to reach 49,000 people directly with our response in the coming year. Food security is a key priority and we are distributing food supplies and vouchers to vulnerable families, as well as supporting 100 of the most vulnerable families to cultivate their plots of land for food and income. We are also providing mental health and psycho-social support for affected children and their families, and supporting remote education for children by developing and providing home learning materials and assisting caregivers with home schooling. We are also continuing to provide health workers with sanitiser and personal protective equipment like masks and gloves, providing families with hygiene kits and schools with sanitiser, and producing videos covering COVID-19 prevention and child protection information and sharing them on social media. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

India

*India is one of 28 countries that World Vision is targeting with an increased multi-million-dollar emergency response that will reach at least 72 million people, half of them children.

In India, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are able to work without restrictions because of COVID-19.

More than 11 million cases of COVID-19 and 157,000 deaths have been confirmed in the country of India (as at 1 March 2021). The government imposed a 40-day national lockdown on 24 March 2020 and several states introduced laws against public gatherings, non-essential movement of people and to enforce social distancing. In April 2020, unemployment rose nearly 19 percent in a month to 26 percent. Restrictions were extended but some have been eased since August 2020, with schools allowed to reopen in October. Over 3.6 million people in north eastern India have also been affected by cyclones and flooding, compounding the challenges of the COVID-19 crisis. World Vision aims to reach more than 3.5 million people, including 283,00 sponsored children, with our COVID-19 response. We are working to limit the spread of COVID-19 by sharing prevention messages through printed materials, digital channels, radio and our faith leader networks; providing the most vulnerable families with hygiene supplies like soap; and building or maintaining community water and sanitation infrastructure. We are supporting local health systems by training community health workers; providing personal protective equipment to health facilities; and assisting medical facilities with COVID-19 response support. We are also supporting children made vulnerable by COVID-19 by providing cash, vouchers and food; supporting education, nutrition, immunisation, maternal and newborn care, and child protection programs and services to continue; and supporting families to rebuild their livelihoods. And we are working with other organisations to help coordinate the collective response and advocate for children to be prioritised. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Indonesia

*Indonesia is one of 28 countries that World Vision is targeting with an increased multi-million-dollar emergency response that will reach at least 72 million people, half of them children.

In Indonesia, currently 45% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions and 55% are working under partial restrictions as a result of COVID-19.

The country of Indonesia has confirmed more than 1.3 million cases of COVID-19 and 35,000 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The government initially declared an emergency, appointing provincial task forces, imposing travel bans, closing schools and all non-essential business, and banning public gatherings. Restrictions have been eased since June 2020 and schools began reopening in shifts, but new restrictions including limits on gatherings, travel, public activities and school closures have been reintroduced. World Vision aims to reach 248,000 people directly with our response in the coming year, and 1.2 million indirectly. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on food security, livelihoods, health, nutrition, education, child protection and water and sanitation. We are working to limit the spread of the virus by sharing COVID-19 prevention messaging and distributing hygiene kits to families. We are supporting families to cope with the impacts of COVID-19 by providing the most vulnerable families with food and cash vouchers, distributing home-based activity packs and educational materials, and supporting faith leaders to provide psychosocial support to families. We are also partnering with a local university to help identify online/remote learning opportunities and develop online classes, especially for children with disabilities. We are supporting people with COVID-19 to get the care they need by providing personal protective equipment to households with COVID-19 patients, teaching people to care for COVID-19 patients, and supporting suspected of being infected to get health care. And we are helping to coordinate the national and district response with government bodies and other organisations, and advocating for children to be prioritised. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Jerusalem and West Bank

In Jerusalem, West Bank and Gaza, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

A total of 206,438 COVID-19 cases and 2,236 deaths have been recorded in Jerusalem, West Bank and Gaza (as at 1 March 2021). The Palestinian Authority declared a State of Emergency over areas under their administration on 22 March 2020 and the Israeli Government restricted all non-essential movement throughout the rest of the West Bank and Israel in response to COVID-19. Israel introduced a curfew across areas under its control in January 2021, while a State of Emergency remains in place in areas under the Palestinian Authority and lockdowns in areas where outbreaks occur are possible at any time. Ongoing tensions and a lack of coordination between Palestinian and Israeli authorities are hampering international prevention and response activities in the area. In partnership with the World Health Organisation and UNICEF, World Vision is distributing information materials promoting COVID-19 prevention measures, reaching over 323,000 people. We are supporting health workers by providing medical equipment, hygiene products and protective equipment to village councils, and providing thermometers, face masks and toys to hospitals and quarantine centres. We are working to provide targeted food and livelihood assistance to vulnerable communities. We are also partnering with church groups to deliver training for parents on positive discipline techniques to use during lockdown. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Lebanon

*Lebanon is one of 28 countries that World Vision is targeting with an increased multi-million-dollar emergency response that will reach at least 72 million people, half of them children.

In Lebanon, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Lebanon has confirmed 372,775 COVID-19 cases and 4,652 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The government initially launched a COVID-19 National Response Plan, with new restrictions introduced at the end of July 2020 banning public gatherings and closing many businesses in response to a spike in new cases. Most businesses were allowed to reopen in September 2020, but a nationwide lockdown was reintroduced in January 2021. Restrictions were again eased in February 2021, but a curfew remains in place. The Beirut port explosion that left 300,000 people without homes and damaged 15 medical facilities in August 2020 has put extra strain on the country’s ability to cope with the COVID-19 crisis, compounding the challenges of the already tenuous socio-political and economic situation. Many families are struggling to meet their children’s daily needs, especially among the large refugee population, which represents one in four people in Lebanon. World Vision’s response is now transitioning to programming that integrates longer-term recovery activities that respond to the worsening economic challenges and the Syrian refugee crisis. We aim to reach 50,000 people with this response over the coming year. We are now focused on water, sanitation and hygiene, livelihoods and food security, and child protection as our key priorities. We are continuing to help limit the spread of COVID-19 by providing water and sanitation services in refugee settlements, distributing hygiene kits and COVID-19 prevention information among refugee and host communities, and training frontline municipal workers on COVID-19 safety standards. We are supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by promoting stress management and positive parenting through online channels and partnerships with faith leaders, distributing educational kits to children, training community workers and volunteers on psychosocial first aid and child protection, distributing food packages and cash to the most vulnerable families, and supporting households to rebuild their livelihoods with income generating activities. We are also advocating for the government and other humanitarian responders to prioritise children’s wellbeing and protection within the national COVID-19 response. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Myanmar

In Myanmar, currently 87% of our child sponsorship communities are able to work without restrictions resulting from COVID-19, 10% are working under partial restrictions and 3% are working under significant restrictions.

The country of Myanmar has confirmed 141,890 cases of COVID-19 and 3,199 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The government initially ordered people to stay at home and avoid travel between villages, imposed a curfew from 10pm to 4am each day, and banned public gatherings. New bans on gatherings were introduced in August 2020 and the night curfew was extended and remains in place. A military coup in February 2021 and the civil unrest that has followed has made the COVID-19 response challenging. With a large population of displaced people, many people are unable to access health care and other services, Myanmar is highly vulnerable to COVID-19. World Vision aims to reach 715,000 people, including 150,000 children and 70,000 sponsored children, with our response. We are working to limit the spread of COVID-19 by sharing prevention messages through information sessions and materials for children; training community volunteers and faith leaders to raise awareness about COVID-19 prevention and provide psychosocial support; providing families with hygiene and protective equipment like masks, soap and buckets; and building and maintaining handwashing stations in communities. We are strengthening local health systems by providing medical facilities with medical equipment and personal protective equipment like gloves and masks; and supporting quarantine centres with food supplies, water access, sanitation facilities, cleaning and safe transport of patients and testing specimens. We are also supporting families impacted by COVID-19 by providing food packages for vulnerable children; providing agriculture inputs like seeds and fertiliser and helping to connect to financial services and markets to help caregivers rebuild or diversify their livelihoods; developing and distributing home learning materials for children and home school training for caregivers; and advocating for and supporting community management of child protection. And we are working with the government and other organisations to coordinate the national response. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Philippines

*Philippines is one of 28 countries that World Vision is targeting with an increased multi-million-dollar emergency response that will reach at least 72 million people, half of them children.

In the Philippines, currently 79% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19, 18% are working under significant restrictions and 3% are able to work without restrictions.

The country of the Philippines has recorded 574,247 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 12,289 deaths (as 1 March 2021). The government initially imposed restrictions to contain the spread of the virus, including business, transportation and school closures. The country was also hit by Supertyphoon Goni in November 2020, making the COVID-19 response more challenging. Restrictions remain tight in some areas but have been eased in others. World Vision aims to reach two million people with our response. We are working to contain the spread of the virus by distributing sanitation kits, building more handwashing facilities, and raising awareness about COVID-19 prevention through partnerships and campaigns on radio, print, television and social media. We are also strengthening local health systems and workers to fight COVID-19 by providing health centres with disinfectant kits, tents to create treatment areas, personal protective equipment like masks and gloves, and information materials about COVID-19. And we are supporting vulnerable children and families to cope with the impacts of the crisis by providing emergency food supplies, cash transfers, education materials for children, child protection services, and help for parents to build back their livelihoods. Our work covers all communities where children are sponsored in 24 provinces across the country. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Sri Lanka

In Sri Lanka, currently 27% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19 and 73% are working under partial restrictions.

The country of Sri Lanka has recorded 82,890 cases of COVID-19 and 464 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). In response, the government imposed a nationwide curfew in March 2020, prohibiting movement between districts and closing non-essential services. The restrictions were mostly lifted in April 2020, though curfews, travel restrictions and compulsory mask wearing were reintroduced in October after an increase in cases and remain in place. An assessment in April 2020 of the 33 areas where children are sponsored in Sri Lanka found that 78 percent of households’ livelihoods had been severely affected by COVID-19. World Vision is focused on combatting the spread of the virus in Sri Lanka, working with the Government of Sri Lanka to educate communities on COVID-19 prevention. World Vision aims to reach 555,000 people, including 190,000 children, with our direct response and 587,000 people with information. We are working to limit the spread of the virus by sharing prevention information, training faith leaders to share prevention information with their communities, distributing hygiene kits to families, and building or maintaining handwashing stations and water and sanitation facilities. We are strengthening local health systems by training community health workers to help manage the virus, and providing personal protective equipment and disinfectant kits to medical facilities. We are also supporting families impacted by COVID-19 with food and cash, livelihoods resources like seeds, tools and livestock, educational materials for children and home schooling support for caregivers, and child protection awareness and support. And we are advocating for children to be prioritised and protected in the national response. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Thailand

*Thailand is one of 28 countries that World Vision is targeting with an increased multi-million-dollar emergency response that will reach at least 72 million people, half of them children.

In Thailand, currently 80% of our child sponsorship communities are able to work without COVID-19 restrictions and 20% are working under partial restrictions.

The country of Thailand has confirmed 25,9851 cases of COVID-19 and 83 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). In March 2020, the government closed schools, universities and all business operations except food stores and pharmacies, restricted movement across national and provincial borders, banned all public gatherings and imposed a night curfew in an effort to contain the spread of the virus. Restrictions began easing in May 2020 and schools reopened in July but the State of Emergency has been extended until further notice. Curfews and travel restrictions between areas are also in place after a recent outbreak. World Vision aims to reach 77,500 children, including 60,000 sponsored children, and their families with our response. We are working to prevent the spread of the virus by developing and disseminating prevention messages in Thai and Burmese languages, conducting house visits to share information, and providing handwashing supplies and face masks in communities. We are strengthening local health systems by providing health workers and community volunteers with personal protective equipment like masks and gloves, handwashing supplies and thermometers. We are also supporting families impacted by COVID-19 by providing children with 77,500 food packages, including drinking water, rice, tinned fish and noodles, and educating children, families and communities in how to prevent the virus and protect children’s mental, physical and social wellbeing through social media and an online platform, which will be rolled out nationally through school networks. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Vietnam

In Vietnam, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are able to work without COVID-19 restrictions.

A total of 2,432 cases of COVID-19 and 35 deaths have been confirmed in the country of Vietnam (as at 1 March 2021). In March 2020, the government closed all schools and many businesses, restricted travel, and banned large public gatherings in an effort to contain the spread of the virus. Restrictions began easing and schools started reopening in April 2020, but schools were again closed and lockdowns reintroduced in several areas, including Hanoi, in February 2021 as a result of local outbreaks. Borders are still closed and face masks are mandatory in public, with strict penalties for breaking the rules. Widespread flooding caused by a typhoon in October 2020 has made the COVID-19 response more challenging. World Vision aims to directly reach 612,000 people, including 207,000 children, across 35 areas where children are sponsored with our response and 1.1 million people indirectly. We are working to limit the spread of the virus by distributing handwashing and other prevention information among children and caregivers, providing households with masks, soap and sanitisers, and building or maintaining water tanks and handwashing stations at health centres and schools. We are strengthening local health systems by providing health centres with thermometers, beds, blankets and personal protective equipment like masks and gloves. We are supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by providing vulnerable households with rice, noodles and milk as well as agricultural training and supplies like seeds and livestock. We are also advocating for children to be protected and prioritised through the response by working with the government and a national working groups on child rights, and strengthening child protection in communities by training social workers and child protection committees on child protection in the context of COVID-19 and running violence prevention information campaigns in communities. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Burundi

In Burundi, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

There have been 2,209 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and three deaths in the country of Burundi (as at 1 March  2021). Many people in Burundi are already living in difficult conditions, with many people displaced by recent floods and landslides and high levels of poverty. Over 1.77 million people are reported to be in need of humanitarian assistance and 60,000 children at risk of severe acute malnutrition. Lockdown measures have not been put in place, but land and sea borders remain closed, affecting trade and people’s livelihoods. World Vision aims to reach 4.6 million people, including 2.3 million children, with our COVID-19 response. We are working to improve communication and engagement with communities to help prevent the spread of the virus by distributing COVID-19 information materials in health facilities, schools, markets and churches, sharing prevention information with community groups and faith leaders, and supporting TV and radio broadcasts about prevention measures. We are also helping to enhance infection prevention, control and management. We are distributing handwashing kits in 700 schools, 30 prisons and 100 churches, providing personal protective equipment, disinfectant, handwashing supplies, water chlorinators and rainwater tanks for health facilities, and training health workers. We are also providing a safety net for families whose lives and livelihoods have been damaged by COVID-19, providing cash transfers for the most vulnerable households, supplying nutrition kits for malnourished children under five, developing and distributing home learning materials for children, and providing mental health and psychosocial support to affected children and their families and training community health workers to provide ongoing psychological support. And we are continuing to advocate to government and other community leaders to ensure children are protected and communities have a voice in decision making. Our work covers 12 provinces and 18 communities where children are sponsored. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Chad

In Chad, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Chad has recorded 3,973 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 140 deaths (as at 1 March  2021). The government closed the borders, schools, bars, restaurants, markets, churches and mosques, stopped public transport and banned public gatherings in March 2020, but most restrictions were lifted by the end of June. Curfews are still in place and land borders are still restricted. Recent flooding and outbreaks of conflict have made the COVID-19 response more challenging. In the coming year, World Vision aims to reach another 21,440 people with our response. In areas where there have been no new outbreaks, we are now transitioning to more medium and long-term programmes to help communities recover from the crisis. We are working to stop the spread of the virus by broadcasting prevention information through SMS, radio and TV, distributing information materials in health centres, markets, churches and mosques, and training faith leaders to pass information to their communities. We are also providing households and communities, including health centres, with water and hygiene supplies so that people can wash their hands, and providing health centres with disinfectant, protective equipment and training for health workers. To help build livelihoods and food security, we are distributing food and care packs for people in isolation, providing cash transfers to the most vulnerable households, training young people and caregivers in new vocational skills, and helping communities to set up savings groups. And we are have provided home learning activity packs for children and advocating to the government to prioritise child protection during the crisis. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Democratic Republic of Congo

*The Democratic Republic of Congo is one of 28 countries that World Vision is targeting with an increased multi-million-dollar emergency response that will reach at least 72 million people, half of them children.

In the Democratic Republic of Congo, 100% of our child sponsorship communities are now able to work without restrictions resulting from COVID-19.

There are now 25,791 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the country of the Democratic Republic of Congo with 707 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The government initially imposed a national lockdown, suspending all flights, closing schools, universities, places of worship, restaurants and sports facilities and banning public gatherings in March 2020. Restrictions are now lifted and schools have reopened, though people are required to wear masks in public and a night curfew is in place. Many people in the country are very vulnerable to the impacts of COVID-19, which compounds the challenges already caused by chronic poverty, food insecurity and conflict, as well as other health crises, including the worst measles outbreak in the DR Congo’s history and the world’s second largest Ebola outbreak. World Vision aims to reach more than 178,000 people through our COVID-19 response in the coming year. We are now transitioning to a response focused on helping children and their families recover from the secondary effects of the crisis. are working to stop the spread of the virus by sharing prevention messages through radio, SMS and phone calls, community visits and faith leaders, and providing access to clean water for handwashing. We are supporting local health systems to respond by training community health workers, providing personal protective equipment for health workers, supporting case monitoring and management at health facilities, and providing psychosocial support. And we are supporting families affected by COVID-19 by providing nutritional supplements for children under five, providing food and cash assistance, sponsoring educational radio programs for children, and advocating for child protection to be prioritised. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Eswatini

In Eswatini, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Eswatini has recorded more than 17,000 cases of COVID-19 and 650 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The government declared a State of Emergency and imposed a partial lockdown from March to May 2020, closing schools, public gatherings, non-essential industries. A curfew is still in place and there are restrictions on travel between cities. With the world’s highest prevalence of HIV (26 percent of the population), 59 percent of the population living in poverty and 28 percent unemployed, many people are highly vulnerable to the impacts of COVID-19. World Vision aims to reach 250,000 people with our response over the coming year. We are now transitioning to medium to long-term development interventions to help people prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects. We are working to stop the spread of COVID-19 by training rural health promotors and faith leaders on COVID-19 prevention messages to share with their communities, providing communities with clean water for handwashing and distributing hygiene kits to vulnerable households. We are also strengthening health systems by providing rural health promoters and health workers with personal protective equipment like gloves and masks. And we are supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by providing vulnerable families with food assistance, training faith leaders, community leaders and rural health promoters about child protection and gender based violence, providing psychosocial support to survivors of violence, and strengthening child protection and gender based violence referral systems. This response will cover 20 areas where children are sponsored as well as three other priority areas. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Ethiopia

In Ethiopia, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Ethiopia has confirmed 158,053 cases of COVID-19 and 2,354 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The country has also been managing cholera outbreaks in two regions over the last year and recent conflict in the Tigray region in the country’s north is making the COVID-19 response more challenging. In March 2020, the government closed all land borders, introduced mandatory quarantine for all travellers arriving at airports, closed schools and banned public gatherings. A state of emergency was in place until September 2020, but restrictions have eased and schools reopened in October. World Vision’s response is now transitioning to medium and long term interventions to help people prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects. Our work will prioritise rebuilding vulnerable families’ livelihoods and food security to meet the growing needs resulting from the pandemic. We are also working to strengthen COVID-19 prevention by providing sponsored children’s families and other vulnerable households with sanitation and hygiene items, and installing and maintaining clean water sources, toilets and hand-washing stations. We are providing health facilities with personal protective equipment and hygiene materials, teaching faith leaders, community health workers and caregivers how to prevent the spread of COVID-19, and providing logistics support for government contact tracers. We are also supporting families impacted by COVID-19 with remote education support and activity packs, distributing food and cash vouchers to vulnerable families, providing psychological first aid and child protection training to health workers and helping caregivers to rebuild their livelihoods. And we are advocating with community leaders to prioritise child protection during the crisis and partnering with the government and other national responders to strengthen the national response to COVID-19. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Ghana

In Ghana, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

A total of 82,586 cases of COVID-19 and 594 deaths have been confirmed in the country of Ghana (as at 1 March 2021). The government closed all land, sea and air borders, banned public gatherings and closed schools, universities, churches and mosques in March 2020, but these restrictions were mostly lifted by June 2020, though wearing masks in public is mandatory and limits on numbers are still in place for public gatherings. World Vision’s response is now transitioning to medium and long term interventions to help people prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects. We are partnering with local governments to provide public handwashing facilities with soap, and sharing prevention information through songs, community radio, social media, billboards and faith leaders to help stop the spread of the virus. We are also training health workers on infection prevention control, contact tracing and COVID-19 and providing handwashing facilities and personal protective equipment like gloves and masks for health facilities to strengthen local health systems. And we are supporting families impacted by COVID-19 with basic hygiene kits, food supplies, care packs and cash vouchers as well as income generation support like start up farming kits containing seeds, fertiliser and equipment, and home learning support for children, including radio-based lessons. We are also mobilising children and faith leaders to advocate for strong policies and basic education, health, water and sanitation, food security and child protection services. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Kenya

In Kenya, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant because of COVID-19.

*Kenya is one of 28 countries that World Vision is targeting with an increased multi-million-dollar emergency response that will reach at least 72 million people, half of them children.

The country of Kenya has confirmed 105,648 COVID-19 cases and 1,854 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The government initially stopped international flights, banned public gatherings, introduced a night-time curfew, and closed schools, churches and other places of worship, restaurants and bars and some markets and industries. A phased reopening of borders began in August 2020, and restaurants, places of worship and universities have been allowed to reopen with some restrictions, though a night curfew remains in place. Schools re-opened in January 2021 after the entire 2020 school year was lost. Many people in Kenya are highly vulnerable to COVID-19 and its secondary effects, exacerbated by food shortages caused by the worst locust infestation in 70 years in 2020 and crowded living conditions and poor water and sanitation in informal settlements where 60 percent of Kenyans live. World Vision aims to reach more than two million people, 536,000 of them directly, with our response. We are scaling up preventative measures to limit the spread of COVID-19 by distributing prevention information through local radio, social media, SMS and printed materials, installing handwashing facilities in public places and constructing community water sources, and training faith leaders on COVID-19 prevention as well as child protection, psychological first aid and gender issues. We are also strengthening health systems to cope with the crisis by training and equipping community health volunteers, providing personal protective equipment like gloves and masks, and installing handwashing facilities and water facilities in health centres and hospitals. And we are supporting children impacted by COVID-19 with mental health and psychosocial support, reading and play materials, income generation support including savings groups, loans, capital investment and training for parents, emergency assistance including food and cash for families, and child protection training, promotion, monitoring and advocacy. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Lesotho

In Lesotho, 100% of our child sponsorship communities are now able to work without restrictions because of COVID-19.

A total of 10,491 cases of COVID-19 and 292 deaths have been confirmed in the country of Lesotho (as at 1 March 2021). The government declared a national lockdown from March to April 2020, including closing schools, community gatherings, and all non essential work and movement. Restrictions started being lifted in May 2020. With a quarter of the population HIV positive and malnutrition affecting one in five children, COVID-19 compounds many people’s health vulnerability. World Vision aims to reach more than 152,000 people with our response over the coming year. We are now transitioning into medium and long term interventions to help people prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on food security, health and nutrition. We are working to support children impacted by COVID-19 by distributing food packs for the most vulnerable families, providing households with vegetable seeds, frost cover nets and guides to promote winter vegetable gardening. We are strengthening health systems by providing health facilities with clean water, and supporting health facilities in areas where children are sponsored to deliver essential services that have been deprioritised as a result of COVID-19, such as immunisation, HIV testing, TB screening and growth monitoring. We are also helping to stop the spread of the virus by collaborating with faith leaders and village health workers to share prevention messages, disseminating prevention messages through printed information and community radio broadcasts, providing households with clean water, chlorination tablets, soap and disinfectant, and installing handwashing facilities in schools and communities. And we are partnering with children, families, the government, faith leaders and other community leaders to strengthen child protection. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Malawi

In Malawi, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Malawi has confirmed 31,798 cases of COVID-19 and 1,037 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The government declared a State of Disaster in April 2020, closing schools, banning public gatherings and restricting the number of people on public transport. Land borders remain closed, public gatherings remain restricted to 50 people and in January 2021, schools were closed for three weeks and a night curfew was put in place. With its health indicators among the worst in the world and a health system already struggling to cope with the population’s needs, Malawi is highly vulnerable to the impacts of COVID-19. World Vision aims to reach 760,000 people with our response over the coming year. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions to help people prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects. We are working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 by training faith leaders, community leaders and health volunteers to share prevention messages and providing clean water and sanitation and hygiene facilities in 33 areas where children are sponsored. We are helping to strengthen the local health system by equipping health facilities with COVID-19 prevention and control supplies and training health workers to manage outbreaks. We are also supporting vulnerable children impacted by COVID-19 by providing psychosocial support programs; identifying, managing and referring at risk children to child protection services where needed; providing home learning activities for children; and distributing food and cash to vulnerable families. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Mali

In Mali, 100% of our child sponsorship communities are now able to work without restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Mali has confirmed 8,365 cases of COVID-19 and 352 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The government introduced lockdown measures to prevent the spread of the virus in March 2020, including closing borders, markets, bars, universities and schools, banning public gatherings and imposing a nationwide curfew. Most restrictions were eased in April 2020, with schools reopening in September. With a large population of displaced people and many without access to basic health and water services, many people are highly vulnerable to COVID-19. World Vision aims to reach 3,100 people directly with our response over the coming year, and 1.7 million people indirectly. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on food security, health, nutrition and water and sanitation. We are working to stop the spread of the virus by training staff, community volunteers, community committees, Christian and Muslim faith leaders and sponsored children to share prevention information with local communities, broadcasting prevention messages on radio, installing water points in communities so people can wash their hands, teaching people to make soap, and distributing handwashing kits to sponsored children and other vulnerable people. We are strengthening local health systems by training health workers on COVID-19 management, and providing health facilities with hygiene kits, isolation tents and fuel for ambulances. We are also reducing the impact of the crisis on vulnerable families by distributing cash, providing psychosocial support for children, and mobilising faith leaders to psychologically support communities. And we are advocating for stronger government child protection policies. Our response will cover all 33 areas where children are sponsored in Mali and eight of its 10 regions. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Mauritania

In Mauritania, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

A total of 17,179 cases of COVID-19 and 439 deaths have been confirmed in the country of Mauritania (as at 1 March 2021). In response, the government initially closed all land and river borders and airports, closed schools, universities, restaurants, markets and places of worship, banned all public gatherings and imposed a curfew from 6pm to 8am each day. Restrictions were mostly lifted and schools reopened in July 2020, but public gatherings were again restricted in December and a night curfew was reintroduced. COVID-19 is exacerbating an already critical humanitarian situation, especially in rural areas, caused by a lack of rainfall last year. World Vision aims to reach 38,000 people directly with our response over the coming year. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on food security, health, nutrition and water and sanitation. We are working to stop the spread of the virus by sharing prevention messages through TV, radio, SMS and printed materials, training faith leaders and community leaders to promote prevention messages, distributing hygiene kits, and building handwashing taps in schools. We are also strengthening health systems by distributing personal protective equipment like masks and gloves, providing hygiene kits and handwashing facilities at health centres, and funding sanitary supplies and equipment for the Ministry of Health. We are supporting children affected by COVID-19 by distributing cash transfers and nutritional supplements and providing school supplies for children. And we are advocating for children’s rights and protection throughout the crisis. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Mozambique

In Mozambique, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Mozambique has confirmed 58,772 cases of COVID-19 and 630 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). In response, the government initially closed all schools, restricted gatherings to less than 50 people, closed borders and stopped most international flights. A State of Public Calamity and limits on public gatherings are still in place, though universities and churches were allowed to reopen in August 2020, and schools began reopening in September. However, a night curfew was put in place and schools were again closed in February after a surge in cases. The health system is under pressure. World Vision aims to reach 700,000 people directly with our response over the coming year. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on health, child protection and water and sanitation. We are working to limit the spread of the disease by sharing prevention messages on radio, through printed materials and by training faith leaders; by providing households with soap and disinfectant; and by providing households with clean water and materials to construct handwashing facilities. We have conducted training for the Council of Religions of Mozambique, and in turn, the Council has held training sessions for 300 faith leaders in other provinces. We are strengthening health systems by training community health workers on COVID-19 prevention and child protection; providing health workers with personal protective equipment like gloves and masks; installing water storage, handwashing and toilet facilities in health facilities and isolation wards; and providing hygiene kits for people in isolation. We are also supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by supporting schools to distribute learning materials and develop learning programs for community radio; distributing food, cash, and vouchers for the most vulnerable families; and providing households with seeds, livestock and other income generating equipment and training. And we are advocating to strengthen child protection throughout the government’s COVID-19 response. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Niger

In Niger, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are now able to work without restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Niger has confirmed 4,740 COVID-19 cases and 172 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). In March 2020, the government banned all public gatherings, closed schools and places of worship, introduced a lockdown from 7pm to 6am each day, and restricted travel to and within the country, though schools and places of worship were reopened by June 2020 and other restrictions later eased. Restrictions on large gatherings and bars and nightclubs were reintroduced in December and face masks are required in public places. With more than 450,000 displaced persons and high levels of food insecurity in Niger, COVID-19 is a big risk to many people. World Vision aims to reach over 133,000 people directly with our response over the coming year. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on food security, livelihoods, education and child protection. We are working to stop the spread of the virus by training community health workers; sharing prevention messages through faith leaders, printed materials and TV broadcasts; distributing hygiene kits, including soap and buckets, and personal protective equipment like face masks to vulnerable households; and building or fixing water supply systems in communities to enable handwashing. We are strengthening health systems by training community health workers on contact tracing and referral, supplying fuel for ambulances, and providing medical supplies for isolation areas and health facilities. We are also supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by supporting children with learning activities, training community leaders and faith leaders on child protection and psychosocial support, and providing the most vulnerable households with food, cash and income generating assistance. And we are collaborating with our partners to advocate for government action on basic social services and protection for vulnerable people during the crisis. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Rwanda

In Rwanda, currently 4% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions and 96% under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

A total of 18,790 cases of COVID-19 and 261 deaths have been confirmed in the country of Rwanda (as at 1 March 2021). The government initially introduced a total lockdown, with both national and district borders closed, schools closed, and all non essential businesses closed. These measures have since been eased and schools reopened in September 2020 but some restrictions on movement and public gatherings are still in place. With more than half the population living in poverty, many people are highly vulnerable to the impacts of COVID-19. World Vision aims to reach 9.7 million people with our response, with a focus on increasing handwashing nationwide, supporting the government’s efforts to promote COVID-19 preventative behaviours, and supporting sponsored children and their families to have access to the sanitation materials they need to stay safe. We are working to stop the spread of the virus by disseminating prevention messaging through printed materials, radio and TV broadcasts and megaphone announcements; providing households with hygiene supplies like soap, sanitiser and masks; installing handwashing facilities in health centres and public places; and training faith leaders to share prevention messages with their communities. We are strengthening health systems by providing personal protective equipment to health service providers, and we are supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by developing radio lessons for children, supporting the most vulnerable children with school meals, and providing 100,000 most vulnerable households with cash transfers and food supplies. We are also advocating to the government to follow best practices throughout the response and ensure communities receive essential services. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Senegal

*Sengal is one of 28 countries that World Vision is targeting with an increased multi-million-dollar emergency response that will reach at least 72 million people, half of them children.

In Senegal, currently 65% of our child sponsorship communities are able to work without restrictions because of COVID-19 and 35% are working under significant restrictions.

A total of 34,255 cases of COVID-19 and 866 deaths have been confirmed in the country of Senegal (as at 1 March 2021). The government declared a State of Emergency in March 2020, closing schools and universities, banning public gatherings, including church and mosque services, prohibiting movement between regions, closing some markets, and imposing a curfew from 8pm to 6am each day. Schools returned at the end of June 2020, though restrictions on large gatherings and curfews in some areas were reintroduced in January 2021 and face masks are still required in public places. World Vision aims to reach 123,000 people directly with our response over the coming year, and 1.4 million people indirectly. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on food security and livelihoods. We are working to stop the spread of the virus by sharing prevention messages through radio and TV broadcasts, printed materials, and partnering with faith leaders and community leaders. We are also strengthening the local health system with hygiene kits, disinfectant and protective equipment for health centres and training for health workers. And we are reducing the impact of the crisis on the most vulnerable children and their families with cash transfers and food distribution, mental health support and psychological first aid for children and caregivers, home learning materials for children, and child protection programming. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Sierra Leone

In Sierra Leone, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

A total of 3,887 cases of COVID-19 and 79 deaths have been confirmed in the country of Sierra Leone (as at 1 March 2021). The government declared a State of Emergency for 12 months in March 2020, closing borders and schools, and imposing a national lockdown. A second national lockdown was implemented for three days in May 2020 and a night curfew, inter-district travel restrictions and limits of religious gatherings were put in place in January 2021. Face masks must still be worn in public. The limited capacity of the country’s health system means that Sierra Leone is highly vulnerable to COVID-19. World Vision aims to reach 350,000 people directly through our response this coming year, and 1.5 million people indirectly. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on health, nutrition, education, child protection, water and sanitation, and livelihoods. We are working to limit the spread of the virus by sharing prevention messages through social media, weekly radio discussion programs, TV programs and community messages; training faith leaders to share prevention information with their communities; distributing handwashing kits and face marks to people in high risk areas; and improving people’s access to water for handwashing by installing water tanks, restoring water supply systems, establishing boreholes and trucking water into vulnerable communities. We are strengthening health systems by providing health workers with personal protective equipment and COVID-19 training; training community health workers; and equipping health units with basic medicine, equipment and nutrition supplements. We are also supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by supporting teachers to produce remote learning programs for radio and TV and distributing 12,000 solar powered radios; training community volunteers on child protection risks and reporting and psychosocial support for children; promoting child protection on radio and TV; and providing food assistance for the most vulnerable households and people in quarantine facilities. And we are advocating for the government to strengthen child protection, education, food security and livelihoods policies. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

South Africa

*South Africa is one of 28 countries that World Vision is targeting with an increased multi-million-dollar emergency response that will reach at least 72 million people, half of them children.

In South Africa, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

More than 1.5 million cases of COVID-19 and 49,000 deaths have been confirmed in the country of South Africa (as at 1 March 2021). The government initially imposed a national lockdown so no one could leave their homes except to provide essential services. Restrictions were eased and phased reopening of schools began in June 2020, but bans on movement between provinces were reintroduced and schools were again closed from the end of July 2020 to the end of August. The alert level was raised to level three at the end of December 2020, so a nationwide curfew, limits on gatherings of more than 10 and mandatory face masks have been reintroduced. Because South Africa has high levels of HIV/AIDs and active tuberculosis, many people are at high risk from COVID-19. At the same time, South Africa’s health system has limited capacity to cope with the crisis. World Vision aims to reach 57,000 people directly with our response over the coming year, and 1.1 million indirectly. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on food security and livelihoods. We are working to stop the spread of COVID-19 by sharing prevention messages using printed materials and networks of faith leaders and community leaders. We have also broadcast a radio programme about COVID-19, child protection, positive parenting and gender-based violence prevention on 10 radio stations. We are supporting the local health system by providing health workers and volunteers with personal protective equipment, and we are advocating for stronger child protection and gender based violence referral systems. We are also supporting children made vulnerable by COVID-19 with homework clubs to help children catch up on lost time learning during lockdown, psychosocial support activities, and hygiene packs and emergency food supplies for the most vulnerable children. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Tanzania

In Tanzania, currently 2% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions and 98% are able to work without restrictions because of COVID-19.

There are 509 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 21 deaths in the country of Tanzania (as at 1 March 2021). The government closed all schools and universities and restricted public gatherings and international travel in March 2020, but restrictions were eased in May 2020 with schools and universities fully reopened in June. World Vision aims to reach more than 12.6 million people, including 5.5 million children, with our response. We are working to limit the spread of the virus by training faith leaders to share prevention and child protection messages with their communities, and providing community volunteers with sanitisers, masks, gloves, COVID-19 information and child protection training. We are strengthening local health systems by training community health workers on COVID-19 management; helping transport health workers and testing specimens; providing health workers, health facilities and isolation/quarantine sites with medical equipment and supplies; and advocating to the government for stronger social services, child protection and gender based violence prevention throughout COVID-19. We are also supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by training teachers and local community leaders on mental health and psychological support, helping to distribute Tanzania Institute of Education learning materials to remote areas and for children with disabilities, providing food and cash for vulnerable households, providing children with meals at school, and providing households with resources to generate income, like seeds, poultry and tools. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Uganda

In Uganda, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

There are 40,335 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 334 deaths in the country of Uganda (as at 1 March 2021). The government introduced a national lockdown at the end of March 2020, closing schools and places of worship, banning public gatherings and public and private transport, closing the borders, shutting down all non essential businesses and imposing a night curfew. Restrictions began easing in July 2020 and schools reopened in October, though the night curfew remains in place. Uganda hosts of 1.1 million refugees and these people and many others in the country are highly vulnerable to the economic impacts of COVID-19. World Vision aims to reach five million people, including 2.9 million children, with our response. We are working to limit the spread of the virus by partnering with the Ministry of Health to develop, translate, print and distribute information about COVID-19; training community health workers, faith leaders and other community leaders to share prevention messages with their communities and on radio talk shows; providing soap and hygiene kits to households; supplying handwashing facilities at community health centres and markets; and providing schools with access to clean water and taps to enable handwashing. We are strengthening health systems by equipping health workers and community health workers with protective equipment and training on COVID-19 and psychosocial support; supporting transportation of COVID-19 patients; and conducting COVID-19 surveillance with community teams. We are also supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by providing vegetable seeds and cash transfers to vulnerable households; training people on good agricultural practices and providing technical advice; partnering with VisionFund to provide emergency business recovery loans; supporting the Ministry of Education to deliver self-learning materials to children and develop radio broadcasts; raising community awareness about child protection and helping to strengthen referral systems and services. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Zambia

In Zambia, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Zambia has recorded 77,171 cases of COVID-19 and 1,059 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). In response, the government initially closed schools, restricted public gatherings, including worship services, and imposed quarantines of people arriving from high-risk areas. Schools and businesses like bars and nightclubs were reopened in September 2020. The World Health Organisation has ranked Zambia as at high risk from COVID-19 as a result of its high population movements. World Vision aims to reach 92,000 people directly with our response over the coming year. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on livelihoods, health, and child protection. We are working to limit the spread of COVID-19 by sharing information on the virus through social media, SMS, radio and TV; training faith leaders and community leaders to share prevention messages with their communities; building handwashing facilities in communities; providing vulnerable households with masks and soap; and establishing COVID-19 surveillance teams in communities. We are strengthening local health systems by training community health workers on contact tracing, virus management and child protection; supplying health workers with personal protective equipment like masks and gloves; supporting health facilities with their COVID-19 response and access to water; transporting patients and testing specimens; and securing safe quarantine and isolation spaces. We are also supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by providing psychosocial support, developing home learning materials and radio programs, strengthening child protection awareness and referral services, and providing cash grants and food packs to the most vulnerable households. We have also documented the voices of community members who are speaking out to end violence against children, especially during COVID-19, and will use these messages to create an online movement advocating for policy changes. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Zimbabwe

In Zimbabwe, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

There are 35,994 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 1,458 deaths in the country of Zimbabwe (as at 1 March 2021). In response to the COVID-19 crisis, the government imposed a national lockdown at the end of March 2020and the lockdown was extended at the end of July 2020. A new nationwide lockdown was introduced in January 2021 with a night curfew and travel between cities restricted. Face masks are mandatory in public and schools remain closed. World Vision aims to reach 398,000 people directly with our response over the coming year. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on food security, livelihoods, and water and sanitation. We are working to improve food security by distributing food and cash to people in areas also affected by drought, providing information on COVID-19 and child protection at the same time.  We are also sharing information about COVID-19 and child protection through SMS, radio and printed materials targeting parents, teachers, and other community members. We have also trained more than 1,400 faith leaders to share COVID-19 information in their communities, connecting them through WhatsApp groups through which we provide COVID-19 messages. We are also training these faith partners to monitor domestic violence reports and provide counselling to help protect children and other vulnerable people. We are strengthening local health systems by providing health workers with infection, prevention and control guides, supporting national, provincial and district response coordination, providing health facilities with soap and sanitiser, and supplying the Ministry of Health with personal protective and equipment and test kits. We are also installing clean water sources and sanitation facilities in schools and health centres. And we are advocating for strong child protection measures to be included in the national COVID-19 response. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Albania

In Albania, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Albania has confirmed 106,215 cases of COVID-19 and 1,775 deaths and Kosovo has confirmed 68,760 cases and 1,585 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). To contain the spread of the virus, the Albania government declared a State of Emergency in March 2020. Schools and universities as well as non essential businesses were closed, and a 16 hour daily curfew was imposed. Most restrictions were eased in June 2020, but new restrictions on movement and public gatherings were introduced in November 2020 in response to new outbreaks, a night curfew was put in place in January 2021 and new movement restrictions were introduced in mid February. In Kosovo, most restrictions were lifted and schools reopened in June 2020, but curfew and movement restrictions were reintroduced in November 2020. The curfew has now been lifted but some restrictions are still in place. Already among the poorest countries in Europe with high levels of domestic violence, many people in Albania and Kosovo are highly vulnerable to the impacts of the measures. World Vision’s response is now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on education, livelihoods, and child protection. We have launched an online podcast series about building resilience and mental health, and an online platform with daily family activities to support families during lockdowns. We are helping families to access services and provide for their children by providing children with digital equipment to access education platforms, distributing home learning kits, providing support teachers with resources for children with disabilities, promoting health relationships in families, providing online mental health and psychosocial support to children and caregivers, supporting local authorities to strengthen child protection guidelines, distributing food packs, cash and medical supplies for the most vulnerable families, and providing agricultural training and resources for farming families to help rebuild their livelihoods. We are also collaborating with the government and other organisations to ensure that families’ wellbeing is prioritised throughout the COVID-19 response. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Bosnia and Herzegovina

In Bosnia and Herzegovina, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Bosnia and Herzegovina has confirmed 131,690 cases of COVID-19 and 5,088 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). In March 2020, the government imposed a curfew from 6pm to 5am each day and children and people over age 65 were not allowed to leave their homes for any reason. Schools, shopping centres, restaurants and cinemas closed, and public transport stopped. Most restrictions were eased in May 2020, though schools remained closed until the end of the school year. A night curfew, restrictions on public gatherings and mandatory face masks are still in place. World Vision’s response is now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on education, child protection and livelihoods. We are working to limit the spread of the virus by reaching children and families in migrant centres with COVID-19 prevention information through posters and workshops in a number of local languages. We are strengthening local health systems by sharing information and coordinating activities with local authorities, conducting need assessments in the areas where we work, and procuring and distributing personal protective equipment, disinfectant and other medical supplies to health centres. We are also supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by providing the most vulnerable families, including sponsored children and migrants, with food vouchers and packages, health and hygiene packages, and tablet devices so children can access online education; running education activities for children in migrant centers; and supporting communities to strengthen child protection through new programs. We have also produced a guide on combating COVID-19 stigma, which we are sharing with faith leaders, humanitarian organisations, health facilities, the media, social work centers and schools, and are conducting research into COVID-19 stigma. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Kosovo

Active cases of COVID-19 continue to be on the rise in Kosovo. The government has enforced weekend curfews to slow the spread of the virus. World Vision is responding by distributing food packages and hygiene kits, as well as continuing to raise awareness on proper handwashing, social distancing and other preventative measures.

Romania

In Romania, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

A total of 799,164 COVID-19 cases and 20,287 deaths have been confirmed in the country of Romania (as at 1 March 2021). The government initially declared a State of Emergency, imposing restrictions on public gatherings, travel, non essential business and closing schools. Restrictions have progressively eased and schools reopened in September 2020, but new restrictions, including school and business closures and curfews, were introduced in November and December 2020 after a rise in cases. These restrictions were eased in February 2021. World Vision is now integrating recovery activities into our programming, with a key focus on education. We are supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by providing children without internet access with digital tools to access online schooling, training teachers on using technology for education, providing children with offline home learning materials, and providing counselling to children and caregivers when needed. We are also continuing to work to limit the spread of the virus by sharing messages about hygiene and prevention through banners, social media and WhatsApp, training children to promote prevention messages with their peers, and supplying personal protective equipment and hygiene kits for vulnerable families. We are strengthening local health systems by providing masks, gloves, disinfectant and other equipment to health workers and frontline community workers, and disseminating an intervention guide on dealing with stress to local social workers. We are also advocating for the government to protect children from abuse, violence and neglect and to prioritise children’s education throughout the national COVID-19 response. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Dominican Republic

In Dominican Republic, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

The Dominican Republic has confirmed 239,009 COVID-19 cases and 3,093 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The government declared a State of Emergency in March 2020, with all commercial activity and public gatherings banned, borders and schools closed, and a night curfew imposed. Restrictions began to be lifted in June 2020 but plans to further ease restrictions have been postponed because cases have continued to rise and a nationwide curfew was reintroduced in December that is still in place. World Vision has already reached more than 126,000 people, including 75,000 children, with our response. We are working to limit the spread of COVID-19 by sharing preventative messages, distributing handwashing supplies and masks, and working with faith leaders to share COVID-19 information with their communities. We are supporting local health systems by providing gloves and disinfectant kits to health workers and supporting medical facilities with COVID-19 prevention and response activities. We are also supporting children affected by COVID-19 by providing food supplies for the most vulnerable families, and providing caregivers with skills training and resources like tools and livestock so they can rebuild their livelihoods. And we are working to strengthen child protection systems at the national level through the Children NGO Coalition, and coordinating with the Church of God Council to promote child protection 70 churches. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

El Salvador

In El Salvador, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of El Salvador has confirmed 59,866 cases of COVID-19 and 1,847 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The government declared a State of Emergency in March 2020, closing all non essential businesses and issuing a nationwide stay-at-home order, with people only allowed to leave their house twice a week for supplies. The compulsory quarantine was overturned by the Constitutional Court in June 2020, and economic activities were reopened in phases from July. However, schools remain closed indefinitely. El Salvador was also hit by Tropical Storm Amanda in May 2020, compounding the challenges of COVID-19. World Vision aims to reach 166,000 people, including 66,900 children, directly and 3.5 million people indirectly with our response. We are working to limit the spread of the virus by sharing hygiene and prevention messages through media and digital campaigns and our networks of community volunteers and faith leaders, and building and maintaining water and sanitation infrastructure in communities, like water sources and handwashing taps. We are strengthening local health systems by providing disinfectant and personal protective equipment like gloves and masks for health centres and improving conditions in quarantine shelters. We are supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by promoting good nutrition, providing food for the most vulnerable households, supporting families to rebuild their livelihoods, training community volunteers and others on mental health care, and working with them to assess the situation for children and families throughout the crisis. And we are advocating for strong child protection in quarantine and during the emergency response. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Guatemala

In Guatemala, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Guatemala has confirmed 174,335 cases of COVID-19 and 6,374 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). In March 2020, the government declared a State of Public Calamity. School closures and some restrictions on business operations remain in place, though most businesses are now allowed to open, the curfew has been lifted and commercial flights have resumed. However, Guatemala was hit by Hurricane Iota in November 2020, compounding the challenges of the COVID-19 response. World Vision is now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on education, water and sanitation, food security and child protection. We aim to reach 70,000 people directly and 22,000 people indirectly with our response. We are working to share hygiene and prevention messages through social media, building or maintaining water and sanitation infrastructure in communities, and working with faith leaders to share COVID-19 information with their communities. We are strengthening local health systems by providing health centres with needed supplies, and helping to monitor areas where prevention or response support is required. We are also supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by distributing food, cash and vouchers to the most vulnerable families, providing psychosocial support to children and families, and providing families with livelihoods training, resources and help to establish savings groups. And we are contributing to the national COVID-19 response and monitoring the results in communities. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Haiti

*Haiti is one of 28 countries that World Vision is targeting with an increased multi-million-dollar emergency response that will reach at least 72 million people, half of them children.

In Haiti, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Haiti has confirmed 12,430 cases of COVID-19 and 250 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The government initially closed schools and universities, factories, churches, airports and seaports, banned large gatherings and imposed a night curfew to control the spread of the virus. Restrictions have now eased and schools have reopened though face masks are mandatory in public. However, there is widespread concern because of the weak public health system and the economic impacts of the measures, and there has been civil unrest and violence. Two in three people in Haiti live below the national poverty line. World Vision aims to reach 4.5 million people directly with our response in the coming year. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on food security, livelihoods, health, nutrition, and child protection. We are working to slow the spread of COVID-19 by sharing messages about hygiene and COVID-19 prevention through loudspeaker trucks, radio, social media, posters, SMS, and home visits; distributing handwashing supplies and hygiene kits, including soap and buckets; and building or maintaining community water and sanitation infrastructure. We are strengthening health systems by supplying personal protective equipment like masks and gloves and other supplies to health facilities and community health workers; supporting health facilities to expand their staff and infrastructure to respond to COVID-19; training community health workers and volunteers on symptom identification; and establishing community monitoring and referral systems. We are supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by monitoring children’s nutrition status, providing supplements for malnourished children, developing and distributing home schooling materials for children and advice for parents, promoting child protection and stress management messages, providing food vouchers for the most vulnerable households, and supporting home gardens as a way to supplement household’s food supplies and income. And we are working with the government and other organisations to assist coordination of the national response. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Honduras

In Honduras, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Honduras has confirmed 168,911 cases of COVID-19 and 4,117 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The government declared a State of Sanitary Emergency in March 2020, with a national curfew in place and people only allowed to leave their homes one day a week for supplies. The curfew and restrictions on public movement remain in place, though some restrictions eased to enable a humanitarian response to Hurricane Eta in November 2020. Food insecurity resulting from four years of drought and 60 percent of the population living in poverty means that many people are highly vulnerable to the impacts of COVID-19. Civil protests were held in several major cities calling for government food aid, and the government responded with a programme to provide 3.2 million people with food. World Vision aims to reach 492,000 people directly with our response and 3 million people indirectly. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on food security, livelihoods, education, child protection, and water and sanitation. We are working to limit the spread of the virus by disseminating messages about hygiene and prevention, distributing hygiene supplies to households, and working with faith leaders to share prevention messages through church networks. We are strengthening health systems by providing personal protective equipment, medical supplies, handwashing supplies and cleaning supplies to health centres. We are also supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by training teachers in virtual education tools, providing basic food supplies or cash to the most vulnerable families, helping families to rebuild their livelihoods through agriculture programs and other support, and advocating for the national education in emergency plan to prioritise vulnerable children. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Mexico

In Mexico, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Mexico has confirmed over 2 million cases of COVID-19 and 184,000 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). A national lockdown including closure of schools and bans on all non-essential activities was introduced in March 2020. The government began easing restriction in June 2020 based on a “stoplight system”. In February 2021, two states were at the red level with only essential services allowed. World Vision aims to reach 125,000 people directly with our response in the coming year and another 62,500 people indirectly. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on food security, livelihoods, nutrition and child protection. We are working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 by distributing information materials in coordination with local health authorities, partnering with faith leaders to share preventative messages with their communities, and distributing hygiene kits including masks and soap. We are strengthening local health systems by providing health facilities with disinfectant kits and personal protective equipment, and supporting medical facilities with COVID-19 prevention and response activities. We are also supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by providing food supplies, cash and vouchers to the most vulnerable families, providing children with education support, and running child protection programming in communities to help keep children safe. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Nicaragua

In Nicaragua, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

A total of 5,142 cases of COVID-19 and 173 deaths have been recorded in the country of Nicaragua (as at 1 March 2021). The government has not imposed restrictions on people’s movement and public schools have continued to stay open. People have taken their own preventative measures and many companies have asked their employees to work from home. Nicaragua was also hit by Hurricanes Eta and Iota in November 2020, compounding the challenges of the COVID-19 response. World Vision aims to reach 337,000 people directly with our response in the coming year. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on food security, livelihoods, health and nutrition, education, child protection, and water and sanitation. We are working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 by sharing hygiene and prevention messages through church leaders and school and community volunteers as well as local radio, videos and posters; providing households with cleaning kits and personal protective equipment like face masks; and building or maintaining water and sanitation facilities in health centres, like water storage systems and handwashing taps. We have also partnered with other organisations to produce prevention information in Miskito-language to distribute in the Caribbean coast. We are strengthening local health systems by training community health workers in basic health services, contact tracing and child protection and referral; providing health facilities and other frontline services with cleaning kits and personal protective equipment like gloves and masks; and assisting medical facilities with COVID-19 prevention and response activities, including transporting testing samples. We are also supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by training faith leaders, community members, children and adolescents on peaceful conflict resolution and child protection; providing primary schools with remote learning materials and activity packs for children; training caregivers and community volunteers to provide home learning support; providing business training for adolescents to prepare them for future work opportunities; distributing food packages to the most vulnerable families; and providing families with agricultural tools and resources to rebuild their livelihoods. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Bolivia

In Bolivia, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Bolivia has confirmed 247,891 cases of COVID-19 and 11,609 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The government declared a national emergency and a national lockdown in March 2020, with schools, border and non-essential businesses closed, people under 20 and over 65 not allowed to leave their homes, and all other people only allowed to leave their homes one day a week to get supplies. Movement restrictions started to ease in June 2020, borders are now open and schools partially reopened in February 2021, but face masks are mandatory in public places.  World Vision aims to reach 375,000 people directly with our response over the coming year, and 518,000 indirectly. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects. We are working to limit the spread of COVID-19 by distributing hygiene kits including soap, disinfectant and face masks to families; building community water systems, toilets and handwashing facilities in health centres and schools; and developing and disseminating preventative messages in communities through faith leaders and the media. We are strengthening health systems by providing medical supplies, disinfectant, personal protective equipment, resuscitators and stretchers to health facilities; coordinating with municipality, health and education bodies to support COVID-19 response activities; and training community volunteers in psychosocial support and referrals. And we are supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by distributing basic food packages to the most vulnerable families, including those in isolation or with children experiencing malnutrition; creating virtual learning spaces and engaging children in virtual challenges for speed reading and story writing; providing psychosocial support for children through songs and videos; and supporting caregivers to access microfinance and rebuild small businesses and agricultural production. We are also promoting child protection by sharing positive parenting information with caregivers; supporting community volunteers to continue to monitor sponsored children’s wellbeing and providing them with phone credit so that they can stay connected; and producing violence prevention materials like radio spots and printed information. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Brazil

*Brazil is one of 28 countries that World Vision is targeting with an increased multi-million-dollar emergency response that will reach at least 72 million people, half of them children.

In Brazil, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

Brazil has recorded more than 10.4 million cases of COVID-19 and 252,835 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The government initially declared a State of Public Calamity and restrictions were imposed by local authorities, including the shutdown of schools. Most states have now loosened the restrictions and some schools are reopening though infection rates remain high. World Vision aims to reach 717,400 people directly and 3.9 million people indirectly with our response. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects. We are working to limit the spread of the virus through COVID-19 and hygiene awareness campaigns, increasing communities’ access to water systems and handwashing facilities in communities, and training faith leaders to share prevention messages with their communities. We are strengthening health systems by providing complementary health services through mobile units, including a health boat in the northern region. We are also supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by helping children to continue their education, providing them with psychological and psychosocial support, providing families with emergency food supplies, and helping parents to build their own business or learn new work skills. And we are advocating to the government to prioritise children’s rights and needs throughout the COVID-19 crisis. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Colombia

In Colombia, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

More than 2.2 million cases of COVID-19 and 59,000 deaths have been confirmed in the country of Colombia (as at 1 March 2021). The government imposed a total lockdown in March 2020 that was extended until the end of July 2020. Borders and schools were closed and public gatherings and non essential business banned, though schools reopened in June 2020 and the general quarantine was lifted in September. Some restrictions are still in place in some areas. World Vision aims to reach 369,000 people directly with our response in the coming year, and 252,000 indirectly. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects, with a focus on food security, livelihoods, and water and sanitation. We are working to limit the spread of COVID-19 by providing basic hygiene kits including face masks, soap and hand towels to families; sharing prevention messages about handwashing through digital channels; and providing handwashing supplies like water, soap and hand towels in community centres, health centres and churches. We are also strengthening health systems by providing health workers with personal protective equipment; training community workers to provide mental and psychosocial support; and collaborating with local health centres to provide vitamins and nutrition supplements for people at high risk of the virus. We are supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by providing food packages, cash and vouchers to the most vulnerable families; providing educational materials for home learning for children via radio modules; working with other organisations to strengthen child protection for children and adolescents in their homes through an information campaign on preventing, responding to and reporting violence; and creating a call centre where professionals answer questions on COVID-19, emotional support and child protection. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Ecuador

In Ecuador, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under partial restrictions because of COVID-19.

A total of 282,599 cases of COVID-19 and 15,713 deaths have been confirmed in the country of Ecuador (as at 1 March 2021). The government declared a State of Emergency in March 2020, which stopped all daily operations in the country except for health, food stores and other essential services. Some restrictions on commercial activities were lifted in June 2020 but a nationwide State of Emergency was again declared in December. Ecuador’s Constitutional Court ruled in January 2021 that the State of Emergency and its movement restrictions were unconstitutional, but some provinces and cities have now introduced their own movement restrictions. With more than one in four people living in poverty in Ecuador, many people are highly vulnerable to the impact of COVID-19. World Vision aims to reach more than 337,000 people with our response. We are working to limit the spread of the virus by sharing prevention messages through social media, radio and our networks of faith leaders, training community volunteers to share prevention messages, and providing communities with masks, gloves, soap and disinfectant. We are strengthening health systems by providing health centres with disinfectant kits and personal protective equipment like masks and gloves, providing health workers with psychosocial support, and assisting the Ministry of Public Health to quarantine, monitor and manage cases. We are supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by distributing food kits and cash to the most vulnerable families, providing livelihoods resources like seeds, tools and technical advice, providing education materials for children and families, promoting the importance of education and child protection, training caregivers and faith-based organisations to provide children with psychosocial and emotional support and child protection, and monitoring children’s wellbeing and referring cases to authorities necessary. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Peru

In Peru, currently 100% of our child sponsorship communities are working under significant restrictions because of COVID-19.

The country of Peru has confirmed over 1.3 million cases of COVID-19 and 46,000 deaths (as at 1 March 2021). The government initially declared a National Health Emergency, imposing a lockdown including border and school closures, a night curfew and bans on movement between provinces and all non-essential activities. Schools in some regions returned in July 2020 and some restrictions began lifting in October , but restrictions are still in place in some areas, including 10 areas that are in lockdown. World Vision aims to reach over one million people with our response, including 365,000 children. We are now transitioning to medium and long term interventions that will help people to prevent the virus and recover from the pandemic’s secondary effects. We are working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 by sharing hygiene and prevention messages as well as information on nutrition with children, families, local partner organisations and community leaders and volunteers. We are also providing communities with handwashing stations, working with soup kitchens to strengthen hygiene and food management practices, and raising awareness about community plans for disaster preparedness. We are supporting local health systems by providing personal protective equipment and hygiene kits for health staff and community volunteers working on the frontline of COVID-19 health care. We are supporting children impacted by COVID-19 by training community volunteers and partner organisations in caring for children, providing socioemotional and medical support over the phone for COVID-affected families, delivering play kits to vulnerable children through schools and local partner organisations, helping schools to be COVID-safe, helping families to start small businesses and access business loans, and providing emergency essentials like food supplies and cash for the most vulnerable families. We are also collaborating with other organisations to strengthen child protection and amplify the voices of children within the national COVID-19 response. Thank you for your vital support as we continue to help children and their families to face the challenges of COVID-19.

Right now, there are four things every child sponsor can do

Right now, there are four things every child sponsor can do

Let your sponsored child know that you care

Children everywhere are no doubt feeling afraid as the world around them swirls with uncertainty about the coronavirus. They are listening to conversation of friends, parents and teachers and for some, witnessing sickness and tragedy first-hand. Write a letter or message to your sponsored child to reassure them that even in uncertain times, you’re thinking of them or and praying for them. There might be delays with letters in some affected areas but a message to show you care, even if it takes some time to get there, is powerful.

Let your sponsored child know that you care

Children everywhere are no doubt feeling afraid as the world around them swirls with uncertainty about the coronavirus. They are listening to conversation of friends, parents and teachers and for some, witnessing sickness and tragedy first-hand. Write a letter or message to your sponsored child to reassure them that even in uncertain times, you’re thinking of them or and praying for them. There might be delays with letters in some affected areas but a message to show you care, even if it takes some time to get there, is powerful.

Speak up for the most vulnerable

Responding to this global crisis is a challenge for most countries, but in places where health systems are weak, the situation is even more desperate. Write to your government representatives and get on social media – ask your country to support nations where the world’s most vulnerable live to combat the spread of coronavirus. Encourage your social media network to do the same. If you like, you could also pray for the leaders of these nations and for the health and safety of people living in affected areas.

Speak up for the most vulnerable

Responding to this global crisis is a challenge for most countries, but in places where health systems are weak, the situation is even more desperate. Write to your government representatives and get on social media – ask your country to support nations where the world’s most vulnerable live to combat the spread of coronavirus. Encourage your social media network to do the same. If you like, you could also pray for the leaders of these nations and for the health and safety of people living in affected areas.

Support the Global Health Emergency Response

We need to take fast, informed and united action to protect the world’s most vulnerable children from the impact of coronavirus. We are on the cusp of a catastrophe. World Vision’s Global Health Emergency Response has launched a multi-million-dollar response in 17 countries. Give today and help fund this vital work in the places that need it most.

Support the Global Health Emergency Response

We need to take fast, informed and united action to protect the world’s most vulnerable children from the impact of coronavirus. We are on the cusp of a catastrophe. World Vision’s Global Health Emergency Response has launched a multi-million-dollar response in 17 countries. Give today and help fund this vital work in the places that need it most.

Stay informed

Each one of us can help to stop the spread of the coronavirus by doing what we can to stay healthy. Wash your hands, respect restrictions in your country, stick to social distancing rules and keep up to date on the latest information – visit the World Health Organization for the latest health recommendations or visit wvi.org for regular updates on what World Vision is doing to keep your sponsored child and their community safe.

Stay informed

Each one of us can help to stop the spread of the coronavirus by doing what we can to stay healthy. Wash your hands, respect restrictions in your country, stick to social distancing rules and keep up to date on the latest information – visit the World Health Organization for the latest health recommendations or visit wvi.org for regular updates on what World Vision is doing to keep your sponsored child and their community safe.

Below are some frequently asked questions about how COVID-19 is impacting child sponsorship. We will continually update you with more information.

What happens if my sponsored child is in a community affected by COVID-19?



We know that all sponsored children will be affected by this pandemic in some way. In each community where we work, World Vision staff and volunteers are closely monitoring the situation and responding to the changing needs of children and their families. Operations within our field offices fall into one of three scenarios:
  1. Our child sponsorship programs are operating without restriction. In these communities, we will focus on prevention and actively responding to the new challenges the community faces, in addition to our usual child sponsorship activities. We are also working with health authorities to spread accurate information about COVID-19 to our community partners.
  2. Our child sponsorship programs are operating, but with some restrictions. In these communities, we have paused some of our less time-critical work to limit close contact between children and other people and are carrying out COVID-19 interventions as well as any of our usual child sponsorship activities that are still possible.
  3. Our child sponsorship programs are on hold and an emergency response is underway. In countries where the government has introduced lockdowns or school closures, our face-to-face programs have stopped to adhere to local regulations and ensure safety. We are focused on keeping children and their families safe through a dedicated emergency response that raises awareness about COVID-19 prevention, strengthens local health systems, and prioritizes child protection throughout this period of heightened vulnerability. The majority of our communities are in this category.

You can find out what is happening and how we are working in your sponsored child’s community by checking the latest country updates. A letter and video from a staff member in your child’s community are also available online, along with your child’s annual report. You can see these updates and more on your child’s profile on MyWorldVision.org.

Don’t forget that you can always write a letter to your sponsored child to see how they’re doing. And we’re always here to answer your questions, too!

When will child sponsorship go back to normal?



We can’t know for sure when the COVID-19 risk will pass and operational restrictions will ease in your sponsored child’s country to pre- COVID-19 levels. In many areas around the world, our Child Sponsorship Programs are operating, but with some restrictions. In these communities, we’ve paused some of our less time-critical work to limit close contact between children and others and are carrying out COVID-19 interventions, as well as any of our usual child sponsorship activities that are still possible.  Our staff in the communities are closely monitoring the situation and preparing to resume face-to-face child sponsorship activities as soon as it’s possible.

What happens if my sponsored child becomes seriously ill from COVID-19?



The safety and wellbeing of the children we serve is our highest priority. If your sponsored child becomes seriously ill from coronavirus or any other illness, we will contact you with known information as soon as it’s operationally possible.

What happens if my sponsored child loses a parent or caregiver because of COVID-19?



We know from experience with the Ebola crisis and other disease outbreaks, that the secondary impacts of the coronavirus can be devastating for children living in poverty, especially if they lose a parent or older caregiver. If your sponsored child loses a parent/caregiver to coronavirus or any other illness, we will contact you with known information as soon as it’s operationally possible.

How can you still care for my sponsored child if everyone is in lockdown?



There hasn’t been a day that our work to care for children has stopped, even when restrictions have required our staff to pivot and find new ways of operating. Because of partners, community networks, and the use of mobile phones or other locally available technology, we have been able to continue monitoring children’s health and well-being and respond to their needs. We have helped to strengthen the local health systems and have provided the emergency responders that children and their families rely on with supplies like soap, sanitizer and personal protective equipment like face masks and gloves. And we have delivered desperately needed food, hygiene supplies, cash vouchers and other assistance to the most vulnerable families and communities to help them get through this time.

Can I still write a letter or send a small package to my sponsored child?



Yes. In such uncertain times, your sponsored child or their family could be facing fear, isolation or uncertainty and they could benefit from knowing you are thinking of and/or praying for them.

However, before mailing a letter or sending a small package, we encourage you to check with your local postal office for restrictions around accepting and delivering mail to your sponsored child’s country. You can always skip the post office and log-in to MyWorldVision to send an email to your sponsored child anytime.  Once your email, letter or package has been received in country it still may take longer to be delivered due to possible in-country restrictions from government or local health officials, but rest assured that it will be delivered, as soon as it’s safe to do so.

If you’ve just written a letter to your sponsored child, will you get a reply?



Yes! However, it may be delayed due to country restrictions in receiving mail from the US or restricted movements of our staff in delivering the letter due to government/local health authorities.  As soon as it’s safe to do so, a reply will be sent.

Can I still send a special gift to my sponsored child?



Yes. In communities where our child sponsorship programs are operating as usual, special gifts of $100-$250 (see here for more info) will be purchased and delivered to children and communities as normal. In impacted communities, the process may take a little longer than usual as we prioritize the safety of children and their families, but it will still occur. And when it’s operationally possible to do so, you’ll receive a letter and photo to show what was purchased and the impact your gift made!

Can I still visit my sponsored child?



Due to current travel restrictions and for the safety of all sponsored children, their families, our staff and volunteers, we’re asking that sponsors delay any trips they may have had planned. As soon as restrictions in your sponsored child’s country are lifted, and operations return to normal, we encourage you to visit for an experience of a lifetime. Check back to this page for the most up to date information.

Will I still receive an Annual Progress Report from my sponsored child?



Staff and local volunteers worked diligently in your sponsored child’s community to gather as many community accomplishments and child photos as they could before restrictions were in place. You will also find several updates on how World Vision has continued to support communities even during this difficult time.  You should have received your Annual progress report from your child in the fall via mail.   There is a digital copy of it that can be found on your sponsored child’s myworldvision profile.

Will I still receive photos and videos from my sponsored child?



Some sponsors may experience delays in receiving photo and video updates from their sponsored child and the child’s community. However, when it’s safe to do so, our staff and volunteers will continue working hard to provide updates of your sponsored child.  The latest photos, videos and updates about your child can be found on your sponsored child’s myworldvision.org profile page.

How is my monthly sponsorship gift helping the COVID-19 response?



Across all of our sponsorship communities, sponsors are meeting this crisis head-on with support for programs focused on prevention, response, and recovery. Your monthly donation is helping to:
  •  Prevent the spread of the virus. Support prevention and relief efforts including stay-healthy messaging promotion, public handwashing stations, and distribution of essentials like handwashing supplies, cleaning kits, and masks
  • Strengthen local health systems. Provide personal protective equipment and vital medical supplies; train health workers and volunteers; and strengthen health programs so children are cared for during the pandemic and beyond.
  • Keep kids safe. Mobilize community leaders and volunteers and establish local safety nets to protect and advocate for children at risk of violence and abuse.
  • Ensure good nutrition. Provide families with life-saving food and supplies now, and help them earn incomes, grow crops, and learn about nutrition for the future.
  • Establish access to and promote clean water, sanitation, and hygiene. Life-saving clean water, handwashing taps, hygiene behavior change education, and sanitation facilities are foundational to helping families live healthier lives.
  • Restore livelihoods. Provide economic support for families hard-hit by COVID-19. As they begin to recover, help parents and young adults learn new skills, start businesses, form cooperatives, and more
  • Empower kids with education. Give children the help they need to keep learning, even during pandemic restrictions, so they can stay on track.
  • Deliver emotional and mental health support. Equip children to cope with stress, anxiety, fear, and grief resulting from the pandemic and its effects.
  • Equip faith and local leaders to care for kids and families. Faith communities and places of worship are central in providing spiritual and practical support. Our partnership with these leaders is proven to strengthen their communities’ crisis response, and to ensure protection of children and other vulnerable people.

How are children able to choose their sponsor during this time of social distancing?



The safety and well-being of children and their families remains our top priority during this time. While children are still able to choose their own sponsor, the process by which they do so will depend upon the restrictions currently in place in their community or country. This may include a child choosing their sponsor on a mobile device within the safety of their own home, or at a small gathering with additional safety measures in place that adhere to regulations.

Hand-washing

What happens if my sponsored child is in a community affected by COVID-19?



As each of us has experienced, the entire world has been affected by COVID-19, even where there are no COVID-19 cases in your neighborhood. Preventative restrictions are in place, services are closed, livelihoods have been affected. We know that all sponsored children will be affected by this pandemic in some way. In each community where we work, World Vision staff and volunteers are closely monitoring the situation and responding to the changing needs of children and their families. There are three different scenarios for our offices:
  1. Our child sponsorship programs are operating without restriction. In these communities, we will focus on prevention and actively responding to the new challenges the community faces, in addition to our usual child sponsorship activities. We are also working with health authorities to spread accurate information about COVID-19 to our community partners.
  2. Our child sponsorship programs are operating, but with some restrictions. In these communities, we have paused some of our less time-critical work to limit close contact between children and other people and are carrying out COVID-19 interventions as well as any of our usual child sponsorship activities that are still possible.
  3. Our child sponsorship programs are on hold and an emergency response is underway. In countries where the government has introduced lockdowns or school closures, our face-to-face programs have stopped to adhere to local regulations and ensure safety. We are focused on keeping children and their families safe through a dedicated emergency response that raises awareness about COVID-19 prevention, strengthens local health systems, and prioritizes child protection throughout this period of heightened vulnerability. The majority of our communities are in this category.

You can find out what is happening and how we are working in your sponsored child’s community by checking our country updates, by reading a recent letter from our Area Program manager in your sponsored child’s community or by writing a letter to your sponsored child. We’re always here to answer your questions too.

When will child sponsorship go back to normal?



It’s the question we’re all wondering, about everything! We can’t know for sure when the COVID-19 risk will pass and our operational restrictions will ease in your sponsored child’s country to pre- COVID-19 levels.

Our staff in the communities are closely monitoring the situation and preparing to resume face-to-face child sponsorship activities as soon as it’s possible.

What happens if my sponsored child becomes seriously ill from COVID-19?



The safety and wellbeing of the children we serve is our highest priority. If your sponsored child becomes seriously ill from coronavirus or any other illness, we will contact you with known information as soon as it’s operationally possible.

What happens if my sponsored child loses a parent or caregiver because of COVID-19?


We know from experience in the Ebola crisis and other disease outbreaks, that the secondary impacts of the coronavirus can be devastating for children living in poverty, specifically losing a parent or older caregiver. If your sponsored child loses a parent/caregiver to coronavirus or any other illness, we will contact you with known information as soon as it’s operationally possible.

How can you still care for my sponsored child if everyone is in lockdown?



There hasn’t been a day that our work to care for children has stopped, even when restrictions have prevented our staff from visiting the communities we work with. Because of partners, community networks and the use of mobile phones, WhatsApp, social media and any other locally available technology, we have been able to continue monitoring children’s health and well-being and respond to their need. We have helped to strengthen the local health systems and provided the emergency responders that children and their families rely on with supplies like soap, sanitizer and personal protective equipment like face masks and gloves. And we have delivered desperately needed food, hygiene supplies, cash vouchers and other assistance to the most vulnerable families and communities to help them get through this time.

Can I still write a letter or send a small package to my sponsored child?



Yes. In such uncertain times, your sponsored child or their family could be facing fear, isolation or uncertainty and they could benefit from knowing you are thinking of and/or praying for them.

However, before mailing a letter or sending a small package, we encourage you to check with your local postal office for restrictions around accepting and delivering mail to your sponsored child’s country. You can always skip the post office and log-in to MyWorldVision to send an email to your sponsored child anytime.  Once your email, letter or package has been received in country it still may take longer to be delivered due to possible in-country restrictions from government or local health officials, but rest assured that it will be delivered, as soon as it’s safe to do so.

If you’ve just written a letter to your sponsored child, will you get a reply?


Yes, however it may be delayed due to country restrictions in receiving mail from the US or restricted movements of our staff in delivering the letter due to government/local health authorities.  As soon as it’s safe to do so, a reply will be sent.

Can I still send a special gift to my sponsored child?



Yes. In communities where our child sponsorship programs are operating as usual, special gifts of $100-$250 (see here for more info) will be purchased and delivered to children and communities as normal. In impacted communities, the process may take a little longer than usual as we prioritize the safety of children and their families, but it will still occur. And when it’s operationally possible to do so, you’ll receive a letter and photo to show what was purchased and the impact your gift made!

Can I still visit my sponsored child?



Due to current travel restrictions and for the safety of all sponsored children, their families, our staff and volunteers, we’re asking that sponsors delay any trips they may have had planned. As soon as operations in your sponsored child’s country return to normal and are safe, we encourage you to visit for an experience of a lifetime. Check back to this page for the most up to date information.

Will I still receive an Annual Progress Report from my sponsored child?



Staff and local volunteers worked diligently in your sponsored child’s community to gather as many community accomplishments and child photos as they could before restrictions were in place. We expect that nearly all sponsors will receive an annual progress report and update photo from their sponsored child this fall.

Will I still receive photos and videos from my sponsored child?



Some sponsors may experience delays in receiving photo and video updates from their sponsored child and the child’s community. However, when it’s safe to do so, our staff and volunteers will continue working hard to provide updates of your sponsored child.

How is my monthly sponsorship gift helping the COVID-19 response?



As always, our goal is to serve your sponsored child and other vulnerable children as effectively as possible. For the foreseeable future, we’re allocating up to 20% of sponsorship funds in each country to support our COVID-19 response where needed within that country.

How are children able to choose their sponsor during this time of social distancing?



The safety and well-being of children and their families remains our top priority during this time. While children are still able to choose their own sponsor, the process by which they do so will depend upon the restrictions currently in place in their community or country. This may include a child choosing their sponsor on a mobile device within the safety of their own home, or at a small gathering with additional safety measures in place that adhere to regulations.