COVID-19 prevention: emergency lifesaving support for vulnerable people in Northeast Nigeria

COVID-19 has brought the entire world to its knees. Nigeria is one of the affected countries in Africa.  As of April 19, 2020, the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) had reported 627 confirmed cases with 21 deaths.  On this same date, Borno State, where ZOA works, recorded its first confirmed case of COVID-19. The outbreak has not stopped the ongoing Boko Haram insurgency in Northeast Nigeria. In this fragile context, ZOA continues to provide lifesaving humanitarian assistance to IDPs and the vulnerable host population.   

Boko Haram continues to attack towns and villages, killing innocent people including women and children and abducting many.  Hundreds of thousands of internally displaced persons who are still languishing in camps and host communities depend entirely on humanitarian assistance to stay alive. In line with the humanitarian imperative, ZOA provides lifesaving support. Our team in Borno State provides water, hygiene and sanitation. This project is funded by the Nigerian Humanitarian Fund (NHF), which is managed by UNOCHA.

Hygiene kits for 14,000 people

In early April 2020, ZOA distributed hygiene kits to over 2,400 families or 14,400 individuals. Each kit included laundry/bath soap, sanitary pads, a child potty and jerry cans. The distribution was done while observing the required distance and ensuring that preventive measures were in place. The team met 200 family representatives per day to receive the hygiene kits on behalf of their households. These representatives, mainly women,  were assembled in different locations in groups of maximum 20 people. At the distribution location, beneficiaries who waited were seated at least 1.5 to 2 meters distance apart. ZOA provided hand sanitizer and face masks to all project staff and volunteers.  Beneficiaries thumb prints were not considered as signature on distribution list to avoid physical contact. Beneficiaries recieved a token to prove that they recieved help. With these and other measures, ZOA ensures the safety of its staff and project beneficiaries while delivering lifesaving services to people in need.

Click here to read more about our programme in Nigeria.