In the upcoming weeks, you will notice that our Weekly News posts and blogs will be a little different. We have made some changes due to COVID-19. We want to stay connected with you and keep you updated on how things are going at our various Villages; however, we also want to ensure we are following all government regulations and World Health Organization guidelines to ensure the health and safety of our children and staff. Here are some things that will be different:
- We are no longer holding any events or gatherings, so updates will be related to construction, COVID-19 prevention methods, and staff/children stories.
- We no longer require photos with each story, this means some stories will have photos and others won’t. This is to ensure no one has to leave home in order to take a picture for a weekly news story.
- We are giving each Village the flexibility to skip a week in order to give our Directors a break when they need it.
- We will also include occasional updates on the presence of COVID-19 in Africa and, specifically, in the countries where we work. Please do not rely on us as your primary news source, though. Please follow reputable news sites for more thorough, and up-to-date information. Our updates will be brief and will be dated and sourced.
We encourage you to read this important update from our Executive Director if you haven’t yet.
Here are the stories for this week…
Bulale (Tanzania): New Classroom Block!
At VOH Bulale things are quiet. Schools have been closed in Tanzania and so our students are at home for the time being. However, this has given us a good opportunity to forge ahead with the construction of our new classroom block.
Up until now, our construction team had been working around school hours to avoid disturbing classes. Now we have the opportunity to pick up the pace on the construction project.
Our classroom block now has a roof, which means when students do come back, construction will be done and they will have a new building to study in!
Kitwe (Zambia): Life During COVID-19
At VOH Kitwe our school is closed to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. The VOH children from the surrounding community, however, can continue accessing medical services at the Village when needed.
We are also ensuring they continue to receive a meal through our feeding program while also following the World Health Organization’s guidelines for social distancing.
Today, our Director, Everlyn Chitente, met with the children living in the Children’s Homes. They met outside, one home at a time, and she talked with them about what is happening and asked how they are feeling. She also shared an encouraging message from Uncle Serge, our Executive Director.
Luongo (Zambia): Staying Connected While School is Closed
Recently the senior teacher at the VOH Luongo school visited with the children from our feeding program. She asked them how they are doing and ensured they are aware of and are following the government and the World Health Organization’s guidelines for preventing the spread of COVID-19. She also gave them some homework so they can keep their minds active and not fall too far behind in their studies.
Mwanza (Tanzania): Time for Maintenance!
With schools currently closed in Tanzania, VOH Mwanza is taking the opportunity to do extra maintenance work at our newest site, Nyasaka Centre.
We have done some repairs, ensuring we will soon have electricity connected and resolve some water issues we’ve been having. We also did some painting and added some artwork to the building, including our name, so the community knows who we are!
We are excited to see the children’s reactions to the new artwork when they return to school!
Zimbabwe: Porridge Packs
COVID-19 has changed the way we care for our children at VOH Zimbabwe. We are washing our hands regularly and following social distancing guidelines.
Also, We delivered porridge packs to the VOH children who don’t live on-site. The children were very grateful for the porridge packs and we will continue to do all we can to ensure they are happy and safe during this time.