Covid-19 is a worldwide pandemic forcing us to see how truly connected we as humans are across boundaries and borders. We recognize that every country is being affected by the current pandemic, but true to the SLAKE (www.slakes.org) mission we are trying to facilitate collaborative efforts between the U.S. and Sri Lanka for a noble cause. As a result of the Covid-19 situation many low income families in Sri Lanka who rely on daily wages are now in shortages for food and other provisions.
The IMCD ( www.imcds.org ) and the Rotaract Club of Ratnapura (https://www.facebook.com/ROTARACT.RATHNAPURA/) have implemented programs to deliver parcels of essential items to low-income families in Ratnapura in need of basic supplies. After being introduced to each other by SLAKE leadership, the organizations have partnered to better serve their shared community.
The Rotaract Club has obtained permission from local police to distribute parcels to families via a delivery service despite the curfew restrictions. Local police have been informing The Rotaract Club when they receive calls from low-income families describing that they are facing food insecurity due to the curfew. IMCD is supporting the delivery of parcels to low-income families in need and is helping obtain the essential grocery items through an agreement with a family-owned store. Families have been defined as low-income by local Grama Sewaka officials.
Parcels contain the following items: 5kg rice, 2kg lentils, 1kg sugar, 1 packet tea leaves, 1kg onion, 1 packet salt, 2 packets soy meat, 1 fish, 1 packet of cream crackers, 1 packet of milk powder, 2 coconuts, 2 soaps. One parcel is expected to cost LKR Rs. 2,840 or USD $15 and will provide one family with supplies for approximately one week. Thus far, both organizations have delivered parcels to over 60 families in villages including Morathota, Mudduwa, Angammana, Olugala, Malwala, and Thiriwanaketiya. As the curfew in Sri Lanka continues, these families and more will require assistance.
IMCD and The Rotaract Club have begun fundraising online within Sri Lanka to gather monetary donations to purchase parcels. However, due to challenges reaching an audience of overseas Sri Lankans and limited ability to collect donations online, IMCD and The Rotaract Club contacted SLAKE for further support. With food security issues expected to increase in coming weeks, the need for financial support to purchase and deliver the parcels is immediate and growing.
Transparency Plan: IMCD and The Rotaract Club of Ratnapura have agreed to provide SLAKE with the receipts and documentation to show that all funds were used responsibly as intended, only for the purchase and delivery of essential supplies to families defined as low-income and in need. SLAKE will provide monthly updates to its members via the monthly newsletter, LinkedIn, and Facebook to inform members about how much money has been raised and how the funds have been spent. SLAKE is not responsible for the implementation of the aid activities.
Let's get together and feed a family in need in the face of this global crisis.
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