Supporting children and their families in the face of COVID-19

  • Burkina Faso
  • Goal 3: Good Health And Well-Being
  • Goal 1: End Poverty
  • Goal 2: Zero hunger
  • Goal 6: Clean Water and Sanitation
  • Goal 10: Reduced Inequalities
  • Goal 17: Partnerships for the Goals

Tax deduction possible in the following countries : Switzerland

Partners : ISS West Africa, Basale Stimulation®, Humanité et Inclusion

Description

The Coronavirus pandemic is quickly becoming a child right’s crisis in Burkina Faso. Children with disabilities in residential care facilities and internally displaced families across the country need essential resources during COVID-19. We provide them with social programs, food and financial support, and sanitation items that allow families to stay together and ensure the safety of children in residential care facilities.

In brief

During the Coronavirus pandemic, the project protects internally displaced families across the country and children with disabilities in residential care facilities who need essential resources. It provides them with social programs, food and financial support, and sanitation items that allow families to stay together and ensure the safety of children in residential care facilities.

The challenges

The COVID-19 pandemic is placing significant stress on the already strained health systems, essential childcare services, and economic wellbeing of communities across Burkina Faso. In the past 12-months, over 765,000 people have become internally displaced as they seek refuge from a prolonged civil conflict. Terrorist and militia groups in northern parts of the country regularly instigate acts of violence. Many displaced families are resettling in unsafe housing located in densely populated areas with little or no access to proper sanitation or clean water.

To limit the spread of COVID-19, the government has created strict lockdown orders and many families are losing their sources of income. This loss of economic stability has resulted in many children being unnecessarily placed in residential care as their families can no longer provide for them.

As containment regulations continue, financial hardship and isolation has led to higher levels of stress and children are at an even greater risk of domestic violence and other protection concerns. Many children rely on schools and community services for nutrition and safety, and these services are closed because of the pandemic. For many children, there is nowhere to turn. It is essential we act quickly to ensure that children are safe and families have the support they need.

Action and Impact

Internally displaced people, specifically children, as well as children living with disabilities in residential care institutions have always been Burkina Faso’s most vulnerable populations. The effects of this pandemic are predicted to be the most damaging to these two groups of people, as their safety, nutrition, health, education and economic problems are multiplied.

We believe addressing the multifaceted impacts of COVID-19 should start with children and their families. We are mobilising throughout the Kadiogo Province to provide essential sanitation, nutrition, healthcare and social support services to the most at-risk families and communities in Burkina Faso. Our immediate response and outreach activities will support an estimated 922 children and 714 adults across Ouagadougou and the surrounding areas.

Our outreach to internally displaced families will first provide 100 families with:
● emergency kits containing essential food items
● hygiene-products (soaps and disinfectants),
● protective equipment,
● information documents and phone credit to maintain contact with relatives

We will also provide:
● targeted financial and social support to assist families with planning and provision in income generating activities
● access to counselling services for families experiencing psychosocial or other stresses.
● educational outreach to ensure families understand how best to protect themselves from the virus and stay up-to-date with the situation.

Addressing the needs of children in residential care, particularly those with disabilities, will require specialized support. We are supplying residential care facilities with appropriate and sufficient nutrition packages, including milk for infants, as well as strengthening the capacity of support workers through information sharing. By supporting children and staff with targeted educational tools, we hope to strengthen their capacities to respond to the virus while promoting their existing psychosocial support systems. We will also be providing hygiene products and personal protective equipment, to ensure the children and staff are protected from COVID-19.

Join us in ensuring these families and children receive the support they desperately need to make it through the global pandemic. You can give them hope. You can be the difference that carries them through this crisis.

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