The corona virus pandemic has cause many negative effects among them high food prices, poor economy and extreme poverty in many families. Many Congolese live under a dollar per day and carrying out small businesses or subsistence farming were the main sources of income. Because of Corona virus, many activities have been halted and even getting food right now is a big problem. Many families are going hungry for many days and for those who are lucky afford one meal a day. Recently in Uvira,when the community were still observing the quarantine measures put in place by the government because of Corona virus, there emerged a catastrophic natural disaster in the form of floods that swept through the villages and town centre’s destroying properties, causing many deaths and injuries and even up to now some people are unaccounted for because its believed they were buried alive in the mud or carried into the large Lake Tanganyika where several bodies were retrieved after the waters lowered. This has added to the complexity and difficulty in the life that those people are experiencing. Even getting a meal per day has been difficult and we are very concerned that if no immediate action is taken many children may suffer from malnutrition.
We as MHCD have began a food program to help reduce hunger amongst the people. We first distributed food to the MHCD staffs, with each staff getting 15 kgs of rice and 15kgs beans respectively.150 staffs from different departments were served amongst them health professionals, teachers from our various schools, community health workers and journalists. We decided to start with the staffs because they have been working selflessly and tirelessly in saving the lives of the people in Uvira District. Many of them too were affected by the floods and even one of the staffs lost a child. So the food was like a motivation for them to continue working for the people. For Many days they had been working for a full day without any meals but even so, they never gave up.
The second group we gave food to are the pastors and church members of the Bethesda Ministries Internatiinal, DRC.Each one of them got a bunch of banana plantains and 5kgs of beans. This is because most of these families are housing some of the people who were left homeless after the floods. The food served as comfort for them.
Finally, we gave to some families who were affected by the floods and are living communally in different schools since they were left homeless. We focused so much on families with young children because they are vulnerable and we did not have a lot. All the groups were very very grateful for the help and support of food sent their way and they asked that we thank so much all those who contributed to put a smile on their faces. We thank MHCD Australia support Association, Bethesda Ministries International Australia and all individuals who supported the food program. May God abundantly bless you for remembering the needy and for providing meals for them for some time.