As this virus continues to spread across the world, we expect Myanmar will be severely affected.
Continued violence in parts of the country, coupled with the risk posed by coronavirus, creates a challenging emergency for vulnerable communities.
There is already poor access to healthcare across the country, and around 300,000 people who have been forced from home are living in camps.
Our immediate response
Christian Aid is already implementing large-scale humanitarian, health and gender projects in Myanmar, together with our partners. With 30 years’ experience of working with local partners and faith organisations, we are adapting and developing new projects to respond to coronavirus.
We focus on conflict-affected communities in Rakhine, Northern Shan, Southern Chin and Kachin states, supporting the most vulnerable people in camps, and other hard-to-reach areas.
Our initial response is to provide vital information on prevention, health, water and sanitation support, and to meet basic emergency needs.
How we're protecting vulnerable communities
To prevent the spread of the virus:
- Our local partners in Northern Shan and Rakhine states are distributing soap to over 30,000 people, demonstrating handwashing techniques and sharing information on the importance of self-quarantine.
- In Kayin state, we’re working closely with health departments and our partner Karen Baptist Convention, to distribute 2,000 surgical masks, 200 bottles of hand sanitiser, 50 pieces of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and 4,000 coronavirus awareness materials.
- In Chin state, where the first case of coronavirus in Myanmar was reported, our local partner is distributing personal protective and medical equipment for healthcare workers and members of the community, as well as running public health campaigns focusing on hand washing and physical distancing. We are providing soap and food rations to over 15,000 people living in villages currently in quarantine.
- In Rakhine state, we plan to support our partners by training community groups to produce masks and sanitisers, as well as to install water pipes, and establish hand washing points to improve access to water.
- We’ll support our partners to raise awareness of coronavirus within five communities across Kachin and Kayin states. We’ll also provide materials and training to 500 people living with disabilities to produce hand sanitisers and masks, as well as distributing basic cooking items such as rice and oil.
- We plan to reach people living across Yangon, Mandalay, Kayin, Kachin and Shan states by hosting TV talk shows and running video messages on coronavirus, focusing on the specific impacts the virus will have on women (who make up 70% of health workers) and the additional care that mothers who have recently given birth will need to take.
Please help us respond
We urgently need your help to support our response to the coronavirus pandemic. Please give what you can today.