Dear TDP Supporter,
We hope you are staying well and managing as best you can at this difficult time. At the Denan Project, we have been monitoring the Covid-19 situation at all our sites, as it is effecting our operations in different ways. Our first priority has been to provide emergency funds and assist the doctors and community staff in each of the locations in which we work in order to help prevent and/or minimize disruption as much as possible. Allow me to share with you a brief update with a bit more detail from each of our communities:
All schools are closed due to the virus in the Somali Regional State where we work. As of April 27, there have been no cases of the Covid-19 virus in the Denan area or in the Somali Regional State, but this is likely to change in the coming weeks. In preparation for the virus, we have furnished sterilization supplies, masks, and other Personal Protective Equipment for all our staff.
Unfortunately, the threat of the Covid virus is only in addition to other ongoing challenges for the region. Following the spring rains, there have been severe invasions of locusts in nearby areas; the closest about a 2 hour drive from Denan. We are carefully monitoring this situation, as an invasion of this sort could be devastating to Denan’s crops and food supply. In addition, with the spring rains there has been an increase in the number of pneumonia and typhoid fever cases seen in our hospital over the past month. We continue to need medications and medical supplies to meet our patients’ needs, which are only likely to grow in the coming months.
Our operations in Tariat and Erdenemandal continue unabated, although all the schools are closed because of the Covid-19 virus. There have been no confirmed cases of the virus in the hospitals we support, although they too believe it is only a matter of time before it arrives. The hospitals are open and treating patients while conducting a series of pandemic-related training for their staff. They have also prepared isolation facilities for people who have come in contact with someone who was infected with the virus. The hospitals are prepared with a stock of protective clothing and equipment, along with medicines and oxygen concentrators. The localbagh doctors are also visiting herder families to share information on washing hands, using masks properly, and to ask them to stay home. Without the support of The Denan Project, the local doctors would be unable to reach these remote herder encampments.
All schools in Peru, including the boarding school we established in Uratari, are closed. The Uratari Health Center is still treating people even though much of the area and country are closed off. So far there have been no Covid-19 cases in the High Andean villages where we are working. Like elsewhere, it is only a matter of time before cases occur, and we are doing what we can to ensure the health center has the supplies it needs. The introduction of the Covid-19 virus in these High Andean villages (as at any of the sites we serve) would be devastating because of the remoteness of the locations and the lack of infrastructure.
I would like to thank the incredible thoughtfulness and generosity of our donors and volunteers at this time. With your support, we will continue our efforts to support all our communities during this unprecedented pandemic. As always, it is often the poorest people who are the most vulnerable, and sadly, the most frequently forgotten. I thank you for keeping our communities in your thoughts and prayers as we all face this situation together, in all corners of the globe.
Stay safe and well,