Coronavirus, in Nigeria, is spreading faster than we envisaged. Thankfully, the Federal Government, State Governments, and Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) are doing their best to curtail the spread of the virus and ensure that everyone remains safe and healthy. Currently, there are 65 confirmed cases in Nigeria and more people are being tested.
With Lagos having 44 cases of infected people, the government has instructed schools to be temporarily shut down, any gathering with more than 20 people has been banned, market places and shops (except for those who sell foodstuff/food) have been closed and even BRT buses have been less jampacked.
Everyone has been advised to stay in their homes and self-isolate until a solution has been found to cure Coronavirus and end this pandemic.
However, let’s face it. Self-isolation is easier for the rich and the middle-class (if there’s any in Nigeria). Very few people can afford to stock up their homes with food and stay indoors. A lot of Nigerians make daily livings through menial jobs and it is very difficult to save up money to stock up the house for a certain period of time – even if it is ‘just’ one week.
Let’s bring this back:
Currently, almost 90million Nigerians are estimated to be living in abject poverty. This means that these people have no access to basic amenities like housing, clothing, food, water, toilets, power supply and so on. These people live below $1, which is just 355 Naira, every day. According to 2009 statistics, 92.1% of Nigerians were estimated to be living below $5, which is 1,775 Naira, daily. As of 2018, 152 million Nigerians were living under $2, which is 710 Naira, daily.
Going by these statistics, about About 152 million Nigerians – who live under $2 every day – cannot afford to stock up their homes with food during this pandemic. This means that these people cannot self-isolate or stay at home as this automatically means that they will starve to death, especially since the government has made no provisions for their welfare.
To stop the spread of Coronavirus, we need more people to stay at home and to encourage people to stay at home, there needs to be an assurance – albeit little – that they won’t starve to death.
That is why it is important for us all to help out the little way we can by educating people on the Coronavirus, teaching them how to wash their hands and maintain good hygiene, sanitise their hands often – especially after touching certain things, providing soaps and sanitisers for them, and, most especially, providing food so they won’t starve.
“This is the kind of support we need. Identify a problem, run with it & include a sustainability plan in your solution. We’re very grateful for this new partnership with 54gene at a critical point in our health security,” @Chikwe_I, DG NCDC”#COVID19 https://t.co/9B8oWeNe8j
— NCDC (@NCDCgov) March 26, 2020
Please reach out to the communities around you to find out what their needs are. You can supply them with foodstuff, tissue papers, sanitisers, face masks, wet wipes, soaps and other things you know they will need until this is all over.
If you have no time or don’t want to leave your home, you can make donations to any organisation or individual who is supplying food to the under-privileged.
And if you don’t have money but still want to help out, you can start by sensitizing people on Coronavirus, its spread, basic hygiene and what they can do to flatten the curve.
Today at Obawole market Ogba,we educated the people, gave out hand sanitizers and liquid soaps. We couldn’t get gloves it was scarce and I ran out patience so we went about spraying and sanitizing ..#CoronaVirusInNigeria #LetsFightCovid19 pic.twitter.com/7NthTOR0BY
— Debby Brown (@Debbzdbee) March 25, 2020
Ending the Coronavirus pandemic is our collective responsibility and to do this, we all – both the poor and the rich – have to come together to flatten the curve. This can only be done when we all wash our hands and practice social distancing. If you wash your hands and your neighbour cannot afford to, you are still at risk. If the rich stay at home and the poor cannot afford to, everyone will still be at risk.
What more can you do?
Now that there’s a lockdown in some states in Nigeria, you can:
Help the Lagos State Government by Becoming a Volunteer
If you are in Lagos, the Lagos State Government needs you to join in the fight against COVID-19. Lagos currently has the highest number of infected persons in Nigeria and all hands need to be on deck if we are to fight this pandemic.
Remember that it is easier to manage Coronavirus in Nigeria when the cases are still few, so it is important for everyone to join hands and help our medical practitioners and the government in ensuring that it doesn’t spread beyond this and already infected persons can be swiftly and well attended to.
Help Private Organisations:
WARIF is addressing an urgent concern that has developed as a result of the COVID-19 and the lockdown mandated by the Federal Government.
There is a growing increase in the number of cases of rape and sexual violence against women as more are forced into quarantine with their abusers. There are also more cases of child sexual abuse as school was a refuge for many kids and sadly, they are isolated at home with their abusers.
The organisation has put in place special WARIF safety planning protocols to address this, one of which is the re-opening of the WARIF Rape Crisis Centre.
At the centre, WARIF has provided all front line health workers with personal protective equipment (PPE) so they can be adequately protected and prevent cross-contamination between survivors. The centre offered free forensic examinations and treatment, HIV and other sexually transmitted disease tests, provision of post-exposure HIV drugs and social welfare services such as shelter and legal aid.
WARIF is in desperate need of acquiring more PPE kits so they can continue to stay open for as long as possible and your assistance with the PPE Fundraising Campaign is greatly appreciated.
Please make donations to:
Women At Risk International Foundation Ltd
Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB)
Naira Account: 0232742469
USD Account: 0232742476
Oncopadi App, founded by Dr. Omolola Salako, is helping cancer patients suspected of having COVID-19 get immediate attention. To help cancer patients in Lagos win against Coronavirus – if they ever get it, you can make donations to Oncopadi App.
Although everyone has been required to stay in their homes and maintain social distancing, essential services – especially medical services – will be required to be open 24/7 to help Nigerians remain healthy and beat the virus. LifeBank has created Safer Circles – a visual prompt for the maintenance of physical distances.
Each pack come at a cost of 15,000 Naira. You can help out by donating to hospitals, pharmacies or other organisations that provide essential services and need it but cannot afford to pay for the tags.
Angels Among Us
You don’t have to donate to Nigerian organisations only. All over the world, over 700,000 persons have been infected with COVID-19, so it is important to help out in every way you can – beyond Nigeria and Africa.
Angels Among Us helps people whose means of livelihood have been affected by the COVID-19 outbreak attain financial security.
You can be an angel and help people around the world survive this pandemic by making donations to Angels Among Us.
Don’t forget to extend a helping hand by donating food items, sanitisers, and other materials to those who cannot afford to buy them, so everyone can afford to stay at home and remain healthy.