WOW, we have been amazed at the commitment and support of communities in action and our hearts are to continue working as one body with many parts.
Therefore we thought it would be useful to you to help field some of your pressing questions, so we can all be as effective as possible, in these unpredictable times to assist with good intentions and efficacy.
Suggested Schools Response
With all schools currently closed and the Government/School Nutrition Programmes out of commission/action, this is the time for local school families to help other school families in need, if you can, please.
Most schools have a ‘Moms who Care/Prayer’ committee who may already be aware of and are currently helping, vulnerable families in need. Or if you don’t know the families you can contact the school Administrator to find out who needs help/support.
A simple suggestion would be that for every school family in need, 3 – 5 other school families could divide and conquer to support with a few additional basics to meet those needs on a weekly basis? We suggest you have one champion co-ordinating those efforts (Ideally someone from Moms who Care/Prayer Committee instead of reinventing the wheel)
It is NB not to move, but as many families are already going to the shops for their own basic needs, the idea is to simply add a few extra items into your basket. And the reality is there will be parents who work in Essential Services and will have a driving permit, who could help collect and deliver aid if/where necessary #eachonereachone.
In essence, everyone has something small to assist with to help school families in need #manydropsmakeariver
Suggested Church Response
Churches looking inward: Pastoral Care
As with the above, if each Small Group, Life Group, Connect Group and/or Home Group Leader is aware of the needs within their congregation and liaises within the group themselves to help meet those needs, that is first prize!
Secondly appealing to the Mercy Ministry within the church structure for a coordinated effort in responding to ensure that there are none in need among us (Acts 2 Church in action)
Churches looking outwards:
Please call the other churches within your areas (Anglican, Charismatic, Methodist etc) and identify what each of you has in your hands to serve your collective community (someone in your congregation will have a driving permit, some will have funds to donate and some will join and lead intercessory prayer groups etc). Please connect, collaborate and crack on!!
Suggested NGO Response
Now more than ever is a time to meaningful collaboration and partnering all feet on the ground. It is imperative that NGO’s are mapping those working in the same Geo-locations as themselves and are communicating daily as to the needs within those communities to strengthen the reach and not overburden resources.
The basics in relief work is to identify the three BIG W’s
WHO is doing WHAT, WHERE?
Compile lists of skills and services and then co-labour to meet the needs of those you are called to serve. NB Please make sure you have permits to do so!
Suggested Individual Response
Please this is not the time to start another project, NGO or Food Hamper Collection Drive without supporting those already in motion.
There are so many people in desperate need (people who live alone without family, the elderly, widows, orphans, single parents and foreign nationals) and the demands can be crippling and overwhelming if not managed steadily and wisely. You don’t want to take a shotgun, spray approach.
When individuals/families/couples contact you for support or help, direct them to their local church/Pastoral Team who will find out their needs and ways to assist if possible (Do people need someone to help with shopping, collecting medication, meals, data or money, etc)
For some, it is simple a listening ear and some love and encouragement that they are not alone and we will get through this #bettertogether
Suggested Homeless Response
The City has set up 15 (and counting) Satellite Homeless Shelter Sites, where individuals are screened for COVID-19, TB and other medical requirements and then referred to a suitable site or directed to a hospital/healthcare facility.
The homeless are provided with shelter, blanket, a daily program of suggested activities and 3 meals a day.
We understand that most homeless people are not used to boundaries and it is tough to adjust to a regular schedule and structure when being so independent on the streets. Please continue to refer them to Moses Mabhida to receive assistance.
We welcome your questions so please do email us on firstname.lastname@example.org