Redirecting Efforts to Build Community Protection: The Philippines

Stories | June 12, 2020

Redirecting efforts to build community protection: The Philippines

When news of the COVID-19 crisis escalated, our CBM Philippines office and local partner responded by preparing preventative measures to ensure the safety of one of the communities we work with in Southern Leyte. Since April, 226 hygiene and safety packs have been distributed amongst the community. Each of these packs were specifically tailored for people with disabilities including Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), disinfectants and awareness raising materials.  Due to quarantine restrictions, many families could not work or earn an income.  Food packages with 3 kilograms of rice, canned goods, beans and milk were distributed to those most in need. During the project period, hygiene products and PPE were in low supply in the region and people with disability had difficulty accessing them on their own. The local government’s disaster preparedness committee were eager to include persons with disability in the wider community response due to the ongoing collaboration of the project and activities related to awareness raising on rights of persons with disabilities.  Quarantine restrictions on movement continue to be a challenge in implementing at a larger scale but commitment by local government will ensure the project will be successful in reaching areas hardest hit by COVID-19 by June 2020.

In addition to the health and hygiene packs, the team has been trialling inclusive masks. As CBM communications coordinator Michi noted, “With the use of traditional masks, communication among people who are deaf have been difficult as they cannot read lips.” The success of these masks has meant that this innovation will be rolled out shortly. Michi writes that they are intending to work with local Disabled Peoples Organisations to produce these masks.

Overall the redirecting of efforts to ensure community health and well being during the COVID-19 have been well received. The team note, “We’re able to respond timely to persons with disability. They were very grateful to receive the face masks and disinfectants since that time there was a lack of supply of face masks in the region.”

Pledge to stand in solidarity with all our neighbours, and encourage our government to provide vital support to vulnerable nations by signing the End COVID For All pledge here.

Click here to donate to CBM’s COVID-19 Crisis Appeal today.

Back to Stories

Help eradicate the world’s leading cause of infectious blindness

Your donation could save lives

Related Stories

Women leaders calling to #HelpFightFamine

CBM's Stevie Wills joined 36 passionate Christian women from around Australia in Canberra for Micah Australia’s Women’s Leadership Delegation.

Philippines devastated by Typhoon Karding (Noru)

The generosity of CBM supporters ensures that no one is left behind and that people with disabilities are included...

76-year-old sky dives to stop kids going blind

Dave Vincent is turning 76, but a quiet meal with family and friends is not top of his birthday...