While new cases being reported daily have dropped from their terrifying peak in May, this crisis continues to have significant impacts on much of the country’s most vulnerable populations. Read More»
our response to covid-19 in india
Written by: Marketing & Communications Coordinator, Madelyn Anderson
Over the past months, we have continually reached out to the larger Saving Moses community made up of generous friends like you to raise additional funds to respond to the COVID-19 health crisis in India. While new cases being reported daily have dropped from their terrifying peak in May, this crisis continues to have significant impacts on much of the country’s most vulnerable populations.
Your support has been vital in addressing the needs of the babies and toddlers we work with, whose parents already struggled to provide them with the care they needed before a pandemic, let alone the second wave of infections, lockdowns, and deaths.
With your help, Saving Moses has been overjoyed to be able to provide two lifesaving infant breathing machines, set up a local ICU, establish a clinic for pregnant mothers and their babies, distribute care boxes to over 50 babies and toddlers, and see 30 infants born during the pandemic needing medical attention. We eagerly anticipate receiving 30 more little ones from surrounding areas in just the next couple of weeks! Additionally, we have workers traveling to more rural area villages to inform parents of babies and toddlers in the broader community that help IS available for their little ones!
The medical center mentioned above is CRITICAL to the health and lives of the babies we work with. For the people living in this community, it is their only option to receive essential medical care, as the local major hospital in the area is overflowing with COVID-19 patients. You may have seen reports that hospitals are so overwhelmed, patients have been dying in the streets waiting for a bed, with family members taking to social media to beg for relief for their loved ones or waiting in line for days in hopes of getting maybe just one small tank of oxygen, only to be told that yet again there is none to be had. We are saddened to confirm that these accounts are true.
To put the essential support you have helped us to provide into perspective, one of our team members on the ground shared the following about the impact just the clinic has had:
“The mothers are very happy for our medical center as before they had to travel [very far] to go to the hospital for any medical needs. Even in some extreme cases, babies die on the way, as local transport is very poor, and it is very hard to get any local transport vehicle.”
You have helped SAVE LIVES! Not only do these mothers have hope for their babies, but now their babies can have hope for a future and a life beyond the deadly pandemic surging through their vulnerable community.
We need your support to carry on – we must continue to meet the needs of babies where help is most needed and least available. Although some metrics continue to improve across the country, we know this fight isn’t over yet.
Just last week, the BBC reported that the COVID-19 death toll in India had surpassed 400,000 lives, second only to the U.S. and Brazil. With less than 5% of the country’s population vaccinated since the initiative began in January, experts warn of an impending third wave. This crisis is acute and ongoing, even as we return to large celebrations and various mask-free social gatherings here at home.
With the daily new case counts continuing to hover around 40,000 cases per day, widespread lockdowns continue, leaving many who were already on the edge of poverty with no work or income to provide for their families or themselves.
These babies still desperately need our help! Will you join with Saving Moses to continue caring for these little ones?
From Bad to Worse
Written by Director of Operations, Heidi Cortez
Before the novel Coronavirus ravaged our world, Angola was already extremely food insecure. That means that most of the population lacks access to affordable, nutritional foods. A combination of drought, poor infrastructure, and vast inequality causes this food insecurity. Inequality is readily seen after visiting the prestigious coastlines that are lined with luxurious yachts and then visiting a malnutrition clinic where two babies share a bed, each fighting for its life. It is a country where 93,821 children under five died in 2019 of mostly preventable causes. That was before the pandemic.
Then, the country went into lockdown in March after the capital, Luanda, had two cases of the virus. These lockdowns, although effective at easing the spread of the virus, exploited the inequalities between the wealthy and the poor. While there are those in Angola who can comfortably quarantine, many in Benguela (where Saving Moses works) are food insecure. They depend on services like our clinics to provide for their vulnerable babies and toddlers. These babies and toddlers are susceptible to Severe Acute Malnutrition. This disease wreaks havoc on little bodies with symptoms of edema (fluid retention marked by protruding tummies and limbs), unconsciousness, lethargy, and low weight for height. Essentially, it is starvation. Left untreated, it is fatal.
Anyone who has witnessed a young child suffering from severe acute malnutrition will see the agony of watching a little life fight to survive. It is one of the hardest things to witness.
Saving Moses provides therapeutic milk to combat Severe Acute Malnutrition. Mothers travel to our clinics (sometimes spanning long distances) to receive this vital milk. Saving Moses has provided this service since 2012 and has saved thousands of babies and toddlers.
When the lockdown hit, Angolans were not permitted to leave their residences. Clinics were mandated to discharge current babies and toddlers early. Amidst the backdrop of the pandemic, babies and toddlers suffered at home from Severe Acute Malnutrition with no remedies, unable to seek proper healthcare. Our staff on the ground sought government approval to travel and provide necessary milk during the lockdown.
As the country began to open in May, our clinics saw a spike in clinic admissions. Fortunately, our team secured two therapeutic milk shipments to ensure each admitted baby had enough formula to survive.
We are encouraged that babies and toddlers now have access to the clinics; however, there is potential for a second wave of Coronavirus. That could force another lockdown. To combat this risk, we provide additional rations to babies and toddlers to prepare them if this happens. We continue to watch our on the ground situations to ensure that each baby and toddler has a future.
Learn more about our Malnutrition program HERE.
From Bad to Worse Written by Director of Operations, Heidi Cortez Before the novel Coronavirus ravaged our world, Angola was already extremely food insecure. That means that most of the population lacks access to affordable, nutritional foods. A combination of drought, poor infrastructure, and vast inequality causes this food ... Read More»