17-04-2020 | di COOPI
RCA. COVID-19, our projects continue
Even if the confirmed cases of COVID-19 are still limited (11 cases up to the 8th of April 2020), the Government of the Central African Republic implemented prevention measures, aware of the national healthcare system’s poor conditions.
COOPI was one of the very first NGOs who adopted the directions enacted by the Government, as well as those shared by the World Health Organization (WHO).
Claudia Castellone, one of COOPI project administrators, explains: “when I got back from my vacation at the beginning of March, I had to stay in voluntary isolation for 14 days, as required for anyone coming from at-risk areas (Italy)".
COOPI adopted prevention measures in Bangui, the capital city, as well as in all field offices. Hand washing devices were installed and movements to potentially crowded places were limited.
Moreover, COOPI implemented several mechanisms to ensure the continuity of the projects' activities even if this will cause a slow-down. Castellone says: “Following the new directives, all national COOPI projects slowed down and had to be adjusted. Nevertheless, COOPI support won’t stop and assistance to beneficiaries and the entire population will be provided”.
One of these projects is “Intervention to support the resilience of the vulnerable population of Lobaye” funded by the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation (AICS) and implemented by COOPI since 2018.
The first confirmed case of COVID-19 was registered in Mbaiki, Lobaye’s capital and the intervention area of the above-mentioned project. As a result, most of the activities in this area were highly reduced, waiting for WHO’s feedback. After three weeks and once received WHO’s approval, COOPI restarted all activities, changing its strategy and its implementation’s schedule.
Governments’ measures are restrictive, and they forbid gatherings of more than 15 people. Thus, one of the projects’ main activities – farmers and businesswomen training – was rescheduled.
COOPI in RCA is guaranteeing support not only for the beneficiaries but also for the local and expatriate staff.