COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic by World Health Organization by January 2020 and this introduced unique challenges to humanitarian response. In response, a countrywide lockdown was declared as a measure to contain further spread of the disease. This and other measures significantly affected the livelihoods of vulnerable households especially those who live on a daily wage.
As part of the response, PALM Corps in partnership with Vision for Humanity (ViFoH) and People Empowering People (PEP) secured four months (May 1, 2020 to August 31, 202) COVID-19 response project with funding from OXFAM.
The project contributes to combating the spread and economic impact of COVID-19 among vulnerable refugees and host communities in West Nile region.
The project had four result areas namely
1) Community-level surveillance on COVID-19 response strengthened.
2) Enhanced communication and social mobilization capacity to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic
3) Strengthened WASH campaigns in 3 food markets and
4) Enhanced safety nets (Social protection) for selected vulnerable households.
In order to achieve result four, the targeted households were supported with agro-inputs (a nutrition pack and tools) to do backyard gardening and also availed with handwashing soap and salt for 3 months to improve the hygienic practices.
Findings from a Post Distribution Monitoring Assessment showed that 92.4% of the beneficiaries considered the assistance offered in the COVID response as timely.
PALM Corps consortium contributions in the COVID response in the feedback of the taskforce fitted well into the surveillance and research, risk communication, and social mobilization committees of the district COVID-19 Taskforce.
With the PPEs and regular temperature monitoring, all the project staff have kept safe. The ongoing support from OXFAM has kept the consortium focused to contributing to improving emergency preparedness and response against COVID -19 for refugees and host communities in Odobu zone Rhino camp refugee settlement.