May 26, 2020 | 11:15 a.m.
Springfield, Mo.As the coronavirus continues to affect millions, the stories of families Convoy of Hope has helped keep pouring in. We hear time and time again how hope is being restored in those who have struggled to find it during this pandemic.
In Guatemala, a farmer named Yolanda had been struggling to feed her three children for years. She had recently been accepted to Convoy of Hope’s Agriculture program — and then COVID-19 hit.
“A few weeks before I was praying and cried to the Lord with tears in my eyes that He would provide me with a new hoe and rake so that I could continue working the land during this time,” she said. “When I heard about the coronavirus outbreak, I was sad because I thought that the trainings were going to be cancelled.”
Thankfully, while practicing proper social distancing, Convoy of Hope proceeded with Yolanda’s training and equipped her with a new hoe and rake. “It has been an answer to the prayers I was making these last weeks,” she said.” Thank you so much for your help Convoy of Hope. God bless you.”
Without our faithful supporters like you, helping women like Yolanda would not be possible.
Below are our latest international updates by region:
Africa – We have distributed family kits with maize, beans, and cooking oil to more than 1,200 families in Kenya.
Asia Pacific – Convoy of Hope has already distributed more than 35,000 meals in the Philippines in response to COVID-19. Distributions to multiple areas are underway as requests continue to pour in.
Eurasia – In Bangladesh, meal kits have been provided for 1,000 families. In Nepal, 800 families were provided with food rations in coordination with the local government. In India, Convoy of Hope is distributing relief to hundreds of vulnerable people whose lives were upended by COVID-19 and who were forced into dangerous circumstances. Brought into the light by the pandemic, Convoy of Hope is also looking to equip these people with additional training to improve their lives.
Europe – The Convoy of Hope Europe team is preparing to ramp up distribution activities in the coming weeks. Plans include distributions to nearly 10,000 beneficiaries living inside some of the most vulnerable communities in Austria, Bulgaria, England, France, Greece, Moldova, Slovakia, and Spain.
Latin America & Caribbean – Convoy of Hope teams in Central America continue to provide relief to families across the region. In-country staff are preparing to serve 7,700 families in need with food support and distribute seeds to families for home gardens.
Oceania – Convoy of Hope Australia has distributed relief boxes to communities recently affected by wildfires. They are exploring partnerships with churches and organizations across much of Australia and New Zealand to serve in even more locations.
May 7, 2020 | 2:35 p.m.
Springfield, Mo.With her community and country under lockdown due to COVID-19, Andrea, a Convoy of Hope volunteer in El Salvador, was watching a massive problem unfold in her community. They were out of food.
But Convoy of Hope was able to step in and fill that need. Despite the police and military enforcing mobilization restrictions for the rest of the area, two police officers accompanied Andrea to the warehouse to pick up food for 300 families.
Later that same day, she sent pictures and a video of the food being distributed. With tears in her eyes, her words of gratitude and appreciation confirmed her story and the story of many families who are not able to work due to the quarantine.
Stories like this are all too frequent these days as Convoy of Hope responds to the growing need around the world caused by COVID-19. Thus far, Convoy has distributed nearly 2.5 million meals in 19 countries. In the countries where Convoy of Hope has regular programming, our staff is working diligently to ensure that every child we serve in our program continues to receive the essential nutrients they need.
In addition to meals, Convoy of Hope has distributed more than 86,000 face masks, 1,600 hygiene kits, and trained 15,000 people in WASH and COVID-19 awareness.
Africa – Distributions continue in our program countries as they continue to provide food for Convoy of Hope program beneficiaries, their families, and other families in need. A partner in Togo will be helping to procure and distribute dry food rations to approximately 1,750 families.
Eurasia – Work in Sri Lanka and India is ongoing. Distributions through field partners in both countries are able to continue because we have been given special access by local authorities to distribute relief supplies.
Europe – Distributions of emergency food items and medical supplies have begun in Moldova, with a plan to broaden these distributions across Europe next week. In Spain, a partnership with Fiet Gratia will soon provide emergency resources for some of the most vulnerable families in the region.
Latin America/Caribbean – Convoy of Hope’s response is underway across Central America, serving hundreds of communities with needed food relief. These communities are struggling with the economic fallout due to COVID-19. The distribution of groceries continues in Puerto Rico, serving struggling families across the island. As of May 1, we have distributed 52,431 meals.
- Oceania – Convoy of Hope Australia continues to distribute masks to hospitals, aged care facilities, front-line community services, and hotels used to quarantine overseas travelers. The Australia team is also distributing family food kits via local churches and partners in various communities affected by COVID-19.
- Africa – Distributions continue in our program countries as they continue to provide food for Convoy of Hope program beneficiaries, their families, and other families in need. A partner in Togo will be helping to procure and distribute dry food rations to approximately 1,750 families.
May 1, 2020 | 11:00 a.m.
Springfield, Mo.In some ways, those in Kenya are responding to the COVID-19 pandemic just like people are here in the United States. In other ways, it looks very different. Across the nation, there is a curfew from 10 p.m. until 5 a.m., travel between counties has been halted, and jobs are being lost at an alarming rate. Burglaries and abuse are rising rapidly.
Many people in Kenya, especially those in poorer areas, earn an income by working as day laborers. “Mentally, guys are not doing well. Many people have been laid off,” said Convoy of Hope staff member Naomi Ateng. “Most people are not able to work right now. If you look at the industries, you'll find that most shops have reduced the number of employees.”
As the situation in Kenya becomes more desperate, Convoy of Hope is maintaining our Children’s Feeding and Agriculture programs operating there, while addressing new needs generated by the pandemic. Because schools are closed, Convoy of Hope staff and local school partners are coordinating with parents and children to come to the school on a staggered basis so they can receive take-home rations.
“We're trying to ensure that by the time schools open, we don't have severe cases of malnutrition. During this time, we know many of them are surviving on maybe one meal a day,” said Ateng.
Going beyond normal programming, local partners are distributing additional meals around the country to communities suffering from COVID-19. In addition to supplying meals, soap, and disinfectants, training on proper hygiene and social distancing are being taught. Convoy of Hope staff are focusing many of these efforts in densely populated urban areas, where an outbreak of the virus would be catastrophic.
While distributing relief in one urban area, residents told staff members, “God bless you. We've heard of you. We've heard you feed the children.”
“It was very good,” said Ateng, “because it shows us that this is something that they needed.”
April 28, 2020 | 3:15 p.m.
Springfield, Mo.Since the outbreak of COVID-19, Convoy of Hope has been fielding requests for assistance from all over the world. At this time, we are focusing on addressing needs in our active program countries and the beneficiaries we already serve. With the need growing around the world, we are closely monitoring other areas and plan to expand our reach as we are able.
Convoy of Hope has already provided more than 150,000 individuals with more than 1.1 million meals in response to the outbreak. These meals have been distributed in addition to our pre-existing Children’s Feeding program, where we provide meals for more than 300,000 children at local program centers.
In addition to providing meals, Convoy of Hope has conducted training in hygiene and sanitation to nearly 14,000 individuals in an effort to help curb the spread of the disease. More than 16,000 face masks have also been distributed in communities affected by the virus.
- Africa - Several projects are underway across the continent. These projects include food and hygiene relief in Kenya, food relief for an orphanage in Togo, and food relief and sanitation and hygiene training in Tanzania.
- Eurasia - Projects are taking place in India and Sri Lanka. In India, Convoy of Hope is working through local partners to assemble and distribute family relief packs. In Sri Lanka, dry food rations will be distributed to 1,000 families.
- Europe - Convoy of Hope is initiating a plan to serve communities in Moldova, Bulgaria, Spain, France, England, and Austria with bags filled with relief supplies. This project will last several months and includes the distribution of food to vulnerable families. In Moldova, distributions of food relief through local partners to 10 small communities have already begun. Convoy of Hope partners will also distribute personal protective equipment and hand sanitizer to smaller hospitals.
- Latin America - There are three priorities of response in the Latin America region. Our first priority is to continue serving our existing program beneficiaries. Our second priority is to serve vulnerable populations (women, children, elderly, etc.) by distributing food and hygiene items. Distribution of food and supplies in Puerto Rico is already taking place.
- Oceania - As positive cases for COVID-19 continue to rise in Australia, requests for masks continue increasing as well. The Convoy of Hope Australia team is actively vetting each request and providing N-95 masks whenever possible.
Convoy of Hope would like to thank everyone who continues supporting our work around the world amidst this global pandemic. Caring for at-risk communities overseas remains one of our highest priorities during this time.
To see what Convoy of Hope is doing here in the United States, and to give to our work here at home, click here.
April 3, 2020 | 4:57 p.m.
Springfield, Mo.In light of the global COVID-19 pandemic, Convoy of Hope is pressing forward with our international work. Our aim during this time is to help communities respond to the pandemic while continuing to feed, train, and equip those who are already in our programs.
What impact is COVID-19 having on Convoy of Hope’s international work? All 18 countries where Convoy of Hope has regular ongoing program activity have been affected by the pandemic. The impact has disrupted normalcy of life, resulting in school closures and a negative economic impact on families and communities.
Are children still being fed through the Children’s Feeding initiative? While the majority of children are not receiving food in schools due to closures, our teams and partners are making alternative arrangements wherever possible through local churches and other partners to ensure food is available to the children and families we serve.
What happens to Agriculture and Women’s Empowerment programs? Our teams on the ground are working hard to stay engaged with the people we serve through digital communication and phone calls. We are also in the process of creating new, innovative ways to ensure progress can still be made during events such as these.
How is COVID-19 impacting field staff? The health and safety of our field staff is a top priority for Convoy of Hope. Like in the United States, the majority of in-country staff are working from home. Only a few essential staff members are running the warehouses and continuing distributions. We're asking our field staff to lead by example in their communities and follow the guidance of their local health authorities. Please keep them in your prayers.
Businesses and companies are struggling, so how is Convoy of Hope still providing food to programs? Just like with our domestic response, we have strong relationships with suppliers that continue to provide donations of food and supplies. Additionally, we are monitoring the ability to import food and making contingency plans for local purchases as needed.
Thank you for your continued support during this time of great need. To see what Convoy of Hope is doing in the United States, click here.