Where we talk Innovation and COVID-19
Our network creates stories made of hope and innovations
One of the first things many of us heard after the COVID outbreak began was “Washing hands is the best thing you can do to stay safe!” While it’s safe to say that proper hand hygiene was not habitual for all of us, some of us have additional structural challenges when it comes to sanitation and hygiene which were further exacerbated by this pandemic.
Do we really know the true scope and spread of COVID-19? Even the highest resourced settings are struggling to track the virus as it spreads and understand the implications on different communities. In the complex settings where the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement works, this challenge is further compounded by ongoing migration, rural communities disconnected from national reporting, and vulnerable groups who do not have access to testing and care.
Isolation is crucial to contain the virus, and we have seen that countries where citizens have practiced this has made an impact on transmission of COVID-19. We are also aware that isolation can also expose people to other risks. Sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) is one such risk.
First pandemic? Pandemics are stressful. The good news is actors within the RCRC Movement are bringing together their expertise and experimenting with new ways to deliver and provide psychosocial care.
The outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic has disconnected people physically, socially and emotionally
The outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic has disconnected people physically, socially, and emotionally. Together with the social movements in the past half-year, Hong Kong is encountering a double whammy. The accumulated emotions make it a very tough time. Without face-to-face interactions, psychological support services have become much more challenging. I have to admit it takes… Read more “The outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic has disconnected people physically, socially and emotionally”
Innovation and new ideas originate from many sources, and especially during times of crisis. Communities around the world are asking how they can lend a digital hand. This is wonderful. National Societies are engaged in hackathons for the COVID-19 response. Over the coming days and weeks there will be more hackathons, so we are sharing some Movement examples and some lessons.
From volunteers working in their communities to clinicians caring for patients, one of the first global needs that arose during the COVID-19 pandemic was a shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE).
This need is not new, and as the RCRC we have seen our staff diligently working at all different levels to address supply shortages in our programming.
We would like to highlight four different challenges linked to the global PPE shortage, and different opportunities and innovations popping up to address these needs.
I am a volunteer in Network after imprisonment, a part of the Oslo Red Cross. I am, at the moment, temporarily laid off from my job because of COVID-19. In these times I would be happy to do extra volunteer-work. I have been helping to pack hundreds of food-paces to our members, which other volunteers… Read more “Helping people realeased from prison in Oslo”
In order to control the spread of COVID-19, the whole island of Luzon was placed under Enhanced Community Quarantine. This was done by putting checkpoints in key strategic locations. Some of the checkpoints are unprepared, undermanned and lacking logistical support. Philippine Red Cross – Cavite Chapter supports the front-liners of major checkpoints by providing Food… Read more “Supporting the Frontliners”
Cuando eres joven y te enfrentas a una situación como la que estamos viviendo actualemente, te preguntas “¿Qué puedo hacer? ¿Cómo puedo aportar? Soy Tatiana Campoverde, voluntaria de Cruz Roja Ecuatoriana hace 8 años. Desde entonces, el trabajo que he realizado ha sido principalmente con jóvenes, siempre compartiendo mediante actividades en las quenos reuníamos físicamente… Read more “Virtualizando la crisis”
Soy voluntaria desde hace 8 años en el área psicosocial y actualmente formo parte del Programa de Juventud. Me siento orgullosa, energizada y motivada de ver a mi equipo de trabajo (jóvenes entre los 15 y 25 años distribuidos a nivel nacional) buscando formas innovadoras de brindar palabras bondadosos a sus pares (otros jóvenes que… Read more “Unas palabras bondadosas nunca pasarán de moda”
I learned that a lot of people can be stubborn and that we have to disseminate awareness messages continuously
Our branch initially called on us [volunteers] and we received training on how the virus spreads, how to avoid being infected, how to train others and how to disseminate messages through all media from home. They later called on us to train others including in markets and other highly frequented areas. They reassured us, as… Read more “I learned that a lot of people can be stubborn and that we have to disseminate awareness messages continuously”
Innovators usually inspire volunteers in the movement to innovate and be creative
Carlos doesn’t directly support the work of the Peruvian Red Cross but participates in other citizen groups that focus on health and public management. He provides specific ideas on how artificial intelligence and collaboration technologies can help work in these areas.
We’ve seen how people show a lot of creativity in using digital means to share courses, exercises, music, and games in spite of the social distance. As a Movement, we need to take part in this dynamic and adapt to the situation to stay connected.
Our Fundamental Principles are important to understand what being a volunteer means in such a situation in which we face adversity. We, contributors to the social and health service, are always willingly on the front-line. It’s a time of crisis in various forms and we need to work each day in order to overcome it.… Read more “Our Fundamental Principles are important to understand what being a volunteer means”
Community Engagement Going a step beyond offering psycho-social support, how can communities also be gainfully engaged that enables a wider range of services and a cross collaboration of likeminded to stay active and contribute meaningfully during this crisis? How can the crises help in rethinking engagement of volunteers? Austria is scaling up activities and increasing… Read more “People want to know that you care”
Psycho Social Support Right now, it’s easy to feel isolated, lonely, scared, and frustrated. You’re likely asking, “When’s all this Coronavirus stuff going to end?” “When can I get back to the way things were just last month?” Right now, it feels like life is uncertain, but one thing is undeniable (whether we acknowledge it… Read more “Heal the psychological wounds”