Strengthening Humanitarian Response during Emergency of COVID-19

COVID-19 is rapidly spreading globally and taking many precious lives from more than 177 countries. To mitigate the current situation, Sphere has developed a document, Sphere standards and the Coronavirus response, which can help organizations build awareness on how individuals, communities and humanitarian actors best respond to the COVID-19 outbreak? How can the Sphere Handbook guide our response? The document is available on Sphere website.

In Pakistan, Community World Service Asia, took the initiative to translate the guidelines from English to Urdu and Sindhi for the organizations working in response of COVID 19. The translated version of guidelines have been shared with Accountability Learning and Working Group (ALWG) and with Asian Disaster Reduction and Response Network (ADRRN) for further sharing with their partner organizations. The guidelines have also been disseminated to groups on WhatsApp.

The Capacity Enhancement Program (CEP) team is regularly conducting Skype meetings with different organizations and networks regarding the current emergency of COVID- 19 to know their strategies in current situation and what measures they are taking to overcome the losses. Below are the glimpses of discussion points.

  • Most NGOs & INGOs working from homes, following the instructions of government.
  • Only the health and awareness related activities are commencing through different methods.
  • Many organizations like Agha Khan Foundation, Secours Islamique France (SIF), Pak Mission Society, Doaba Foundation are devising their strategy to work in this emergency.
  • In discussion people shared that this emergency is very unique and we don’t have any experience in this emergency, so we need time to devise the strategies.
  • As we are in capacity building program, we are proposing few online courses for people who need assistance regarding COVID-19.

The labor class and daily wage workers are most vulnerable because their livelihood is disturbed.