I write to you from Dhaka the capital of Bangladesh asking you please to help us now, today. Our situation is desperate. If I had to use just one word to describe the atmosphere in this city at the moment, it would be “fear”.
Everyone is afraid. Especially the poor, who live in vast slums, and can no longer work to feed themselves. They are afraid of the virus. They are afraid of hunger. They are afraid of death.
The fear is made worse by a country-wide lock down and an unprepared health system. Social distancing is impossible, everyone lives cheek to cheek. Many factories are shut. No jobs for daily earners. No one can work. No one can live.
And the people CBM serves, those who are blind, and those with physical and intellectual disabilities, they are the most afraid of all. They are terrified. Because they know they will be at the bottom of everyone else’s list of priorities.
Everyone except ours. And yours.
These people need us so badly right now. CBM is one of the few international organisations dedicated to helping people with disabilities on the ground in Bangladesh. The people know us and trust us. We’re here for them. But we urgently need your support to carry on providing them with the help they need.
Simple things make all the difference… soap, access to clean water, cash, food vouchers, accurate COVID-19 information… these things save lives.
I appeal to all of you who make up the Australian CBM family to rise up and help us here in Bangladesh. And urgently too! Because now is the time for us all to act, to reaffirm our shared values, and reach out to people affected by disability, poverty and disease. Now, before it’s too late.
God Bless you,
(Country Director, CBM Bangladesh)