Overview of Coronavirus context
Due to the high numbers Covid 19 cases, there is a State of Exception in the countries where we work (Colombia, El Salvador, Ecuador, Guatemala, and Honduras) with many constitutional rights waived and heavy penalties for defying strict curfews. Given the shutdown of society, the majority of the population, which depends on daily rather than salaried wages, is going without income and therefore without food. The virus in the region is therefore called the hunger virus. At the same time, the pandemic of domestic violence has increased dramatically, with a 35% increase in reporting of violence by women who find themselves in lock down with their abusers.
Overall, our partners are facing a crisis in public health services, a suspension in legal human rights, widespread hunger and a shadow pandemic of domestic violence.
This is how we have been responding: Peace Baskets Project- PAN PAV
Since the Coronavirus quarantine began in mid-March, national coordinators have been reaching out through phone calls to share positive messages of peace and nonviolent conflict resolution to neighbors, AVP facilitators and workshop participants. Scarce internet access rules out zoom conferencing. Together, they are devising creative ways to address the parallel crises of the health emergency, food shortages and family violence. They know their AVP skills and community strength is more important than ever now to respond to those in greatest need.
Since permission is granted to leave the house only in relation to food and essentials, the coordinators plan to frame their project for those families in need around food, which will be delivered as a peace basket to include food, disinfectant sanitizers and also messages of peace. Delivery of the basket will allow coordinating teams to determine any additional emergency needs of the family, to offer motivation, and to provide support contacts and emergency telephone numbers.
PLA is now receiving contributions for the Peace Baskets Project – PAN PAV. Our immediate goal is to raise $5,000. All donations welcome.
We are available to offer virtual presentations for your Meeting or group with our Latin American partners; if interested, please contact us to arrange: firstname.lastname@example.org
Of special concern is the situation of Salomón Medina who has been detained in a government quarantine center for over 30 days in El Salvador. Please hold Salomón and his family in the light, as well as our colleagues in Ecuador, Colombia, Guatemala and Honduras. To learn more about this situation, click here.
To donate, you can send a check to the following address: Friends Peace Teams 1001 Park Ave. Saint Louis, MO 63104-3720, (314) 588-1122 or donate online. Please be sure to indicate Peacebuilding en las Américas when donating! Thank you.