ACT is responding to the global pandemic as it hits Tunisia – using staff and partners to coordinate the delivery of food parcels and hygiene items to some of those facing unprecedented need at this time of global crisis.
It is impossible to determine the impact that the spread of Covid-19, or Coronavirus, is having globally. The pandemic is devastating communities everywhere, many of which already have so little.
Many of the most vulnerable in Tunisia live a hand-to-mouth existence. Social distancing, self-isolation and working from home are luxuries few can afford. With the government mandated lock-down and night-time curfews in place, more and more people grow increasingly desperate and afraid.
In the face of unprecedented events, ACT wants to continue to fulfil its vision: to serve the most marginalised and vulnerable members of society throughout Tunisia.
Start where you are
In the face of such overwhelming circumstances, ACT knew it needed to do what it could with what it had. And fast.
A two-part plan was quickly hatched and executed in coordination with existing partnerships and contacts. A plan to address the immediate need of providing relief and assistance to vulnerable families in the city, as well as to the Sfax prison.
ACT staff member Sameh contacted a local wholesaler to ask about putting food packages together. For 60 TND (about 18 €), a parcel with 10 days’ supply of basic food items could be put together. The package also included a few cleaning and hygiene products.
On March 31st, after getting the necessary permissions to be able to drive around Sfax, Sameh and a few volunteers made their way to pick up the 20 prepared food parcels and delivered them to the homes of needy families, as identified by a local initiative.
At the same time – thanks to relationships built through the Sfax Prison Project – bundles of hygiene items were put together to be delivered to the Sfax prison, to help ensure the health and safety of both prisoners and staff.
What happens next?
“In response to the Coronavirus crisis ACT wants to show its solidarity and support to those affected by the emergency”, says ACT General Director Adriaan. “The relief items provided are made available by ACT through received donations.”
ACT is already planning to roll out a wider reaching response, in coordination with the Ministry of Social Affairs, as well as local partners through our various projects.
“We are receiving more requests from partners, local organisations, associations and Ministries, to support families who need it most,” says Adriaan. “We have decided for now to focus on relief for April, May and June.”
ACT is seeking to put together solutions in each of our host cities – for Tunis, El Kef, Sfax and Gabès. We want to help in whatever way we are able and are aiming to help several hundred families throughout Tunisia.
We will keep updating supporters as these plans take shape. If you haven’t already, please sign up to our newsletter. This can be done at the bottom of our main webpage.
Thank you for your support for ACT, and for Tunisia, at this time. Together, we are able to stand strong, supporting many in need. Together, we will see this crisis through.
There are a few ways to support the work ACT wants to do in response such great need being faced.
1. Through our head office in Sweden – via bank transfer, full details of which can be found on our website. Please use the reference ‘ACT Covid19 relief’, and email firstname.lastname@example.org to enable us to keep track of donations.
2. Through Paypal – please use the reference ‘ACT Covid19 relief’.