Around the Table

What we learn together

Our Global Neighborhood

Wednesday, September 9th, 2020

During the pandemic, we continue to share stories highlighting experiences of the people we serve and now how COVID-19 is impacting their lives. Though our circumstances, geography, and cultures might be different – this virus impacts all of us in similar ways.

For example, Serilah, who lives in the village of Shikhombero in Western Kenya, has very familiar worries about the virus’ disruption on her children’s education.

Serilah Nyawanga stands outside her homestead to greet us.

Serilah Nyawanga stands outside her homestead to greet us.

Like many, Margaret Mbone, a 59-year-old farmer, mother, and wife in Sichinji, Kenya, has become more isolated – and laments having to avoid public gatherings like attending a burial due to the pandemic.

Margaret and her children

Margaret and her children

The challenges and difficulties created by COVID-19 are too numerous to count and far too lengthy to list. The myriad problems caused by the virus are familiar in every corner of our world and across so many aspects of our lives. The realities of this pandemic – face masks, hand washing, and physical distancing – are the common experiences we all share today.

Though we are united by the tools to fight this virus, we don’t all have equal access to them. It can be easy to take them for granted. We know that hand washing with soap and clean water is crucial to stop the spread of COVID-19. But, for so many of our global neighbors without water, the 20 seconds of recommended handwashing is an eternity. UNICEF is encouraging people in sub-Saharan Africa to wash their hands an average of 10 times per day to prevent contracting and spreading Covid-19. That’s a lot of handwashing. It’s unimaginable when there is no clean water available.

Handwashing demonstration in Kenya

Handwashing demonstrations include how to construct homemade water stations

This year has shown us that our neighborhood is global. Our concerns and worries are familiar across geography and culture. We are all mothers, fathers, students, workers doing our best through this pandemis, and wanting the best for our family and neighbors.

All of us are working to prevent this virus in the same way. Clean hands and social distancing are the tools we all have in this fight. But, while you and I can easily grab some soap and have ready access to clean water… not everyone does.

Your gifts can change that by providing reliable access to clean water points for hygiene, training on homemade mask making, and the installation of hand-washing stations.

Please respond with us to provide essential services and support during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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