In March we launched an appeal to protect vulnerable children and their families from COVID-19. We did this for three reasons:

  1. The health risks of this deadly disease
    Many of our children live with elderly relatives, who are highly vulnerable to the disease.
  2. The impact on communities that were already facing extreme poverty and hunger
    5000 vulnerable children have now lost access to our school feeding programme. The loss of food could be fatal in areas where over 70% of children live in poverty.
  3. The likelihood of any outbreak spreading quickly
    Families living in rural areas weren’t aware of the disease and lacked the hygiene facilities needed to stop it.

Our concerns grew within weeks, as Zimbabwe entered lockdown. Schools and businesses closed, meaning thousands of vulnerable children risked starving.

We are delighted to have some updates to share! We have delivered food packages and supplies to the children most at risk from COVID-19. These packages will sustain the families who had struggled to find food. We have also taken significant steps to reduce the spread of the disease. We are grateful to the supporters who have made this possible by supporting our COVID-19 appeal.

Food Package delivery: success of the COVID-19 appeal

Over 150 children have been given food packs filled with enough porridge and Maheu to feed their families for a month. This is a welcome relief to children and families alike. Elderly or sick relatives have raised many of our children, after the loss of their parents. These relatives cannot work and families now survive on peasant farming. These food packs will prevent children from needing to help grow crops. They also reduce the need for parents to put themselves at harm by going to work.

Nomatter and her family have enough food for a month.

Stopping the spread of the disease

We have converted old oil drums into handwashing stations. These stations will be placed in communal areas. They will help us to prevent the disease spread of the disease by having people wash their hands when they leave their homes.

Children can wash their hands with this converted oil drum.

We will continue to inform the community by distributing 5000 leaflets among children in schools supported by CBF. We have written them in English and Shona to maximise accessibility. They highlight the importance of following social distancing, hand washing and hygiene guidelines.

These leaflets will continue to educate children and their families about COVID-19.

The children’s response to your support

We spoke to several children and they were delighted and grateful to recieve your support.

Ruvarashe is still at Primary School. She would normally have access to our feeding programme. She thanked CBF supporters, saying: “Schools have not been open because of COVID-19. We have problems in getting food because of lockdown. Thank you for the Maheu and Porridge.”

Kuda attends Chitakatira High School. She thanked CBF supporters and said she was “very grateful for the things you have done for us. We are facing such a deadly disease in this country. People are not going to work and people aren’t earning money right now.”

Thank you for supporting our COVID-19 appeal: We couldn’t have done this without you!

This would not have been possible without our supporters. Thank you to everyone who has donated to our COVID-19 appeal, taken part in a zoom quiz or even shared a post on social media. These are challenging times, with many people facing problems of their own. The support you have given us has been incredible. Thank you.

We would also like to say a special thank you to the people who have gone that one step further and raised money for us: Rossella Kench, BestLife Basics, Elite Conditioning, and ELEMENT Afrodance School. We have also received very generous support from several Rotary Clubs, and would like to say particular thanks to the Clubs of Hart and Hamble Valley.

CBF and COVID-19: What’s next?

We are weeks into a crisis that could take years to recover from. You can continue to help the children by donating to our COVID-19 appeal.

Creating Better Futures are looking for people who can make a difference, in these challenging times. If you are in a position to volunteer your time, you could make a huge difference with your professional experience and expertise. Read more about volunteering here.