SERVE Statement on Covid-19

SERVE believes in volunteering that is responsible and responsive to the needs of our overseas partners. Our approach is grounded in the principal of solidarity and adheres to the value base of the Comhlámh Code of Good Practice. SERVE believes that the responsible action is to postpone unnecessary travel and international overseas volunteering placements until such a time that the impact of Covid-19 can be more clearly assessed. In the current circumstances, a decision has been made to not proceed with the SERVE 2020 Volunteer and Immersion Programmes.

We work with marginalised and vulnerable communities who live in basic conditions, often with limited access to healthcare and adequate sanitation. The risks posed by Covid-19 to these communities is significant. It is our view, that a balanced ethical consideration compels us not to put vulnerable people at risk by continuing to send volunteers who may be carriers of the virus.

It is better to take proactive steps now, rather than to later regret inaction. We will explore creative ways to continue to support our partners communities over the coming months.

Yours in Solidarity,

The SERVE Board and Team

Partners: Click image above for helpful links and resources including manuals, social media graphics and posters.

SERVE continue to liaise with our partners to determine their status during the Covid-19 pandemic. We will continue to update this page as information becomes available.

Southern Africa:

The South African Government announced on 25 March the closure of South African airspace to commercial airlines from midnight on 26 March until at least 16 April, as part of further efforts to contain the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19)

The government of Mozambique requires travellers from all countries with active transmission to self-isolate on arrival for 14 days. The government has suspended the issuing of entry visas and banned gatherings of more than 50 people. The government has suspended the issuing of entry visas and banned gatherings of more than 50 people.

Tsholofelo Community Development, South Africa

India:

On 24 March, Prime Minister Modi announced a three week lockdown across India that requires everyone to stay at home from midnight on 25 March for 21 days. Strict restrictions on movement are in now in place unless for an essential purpose.

Association of People with Disabilities (APD), India

  • Centre is closed and in lockdown

Philippines:

Badjao Nano Nagle Early Learning Centre

  • School closed
  • SERVE has allocated €7,500 towards the purchase and distribution of emergency food supplies for the Badjao tribe. Each household received 10 kilos of rice, 8 canned goods, 1 kilo sugar and 1 pack coffee.The Badjao youth leaders and cluster leaders helped to facilitate the distribution keeping the social distancing.

  • SERVE has been working closely with Badjao Teachers and Youth Council to translate ‘7 Steps of Prevention’ graphics into Sinama (Badjao Language). This can be widely shared across the Badjao community social media platforms.

Redemptorist Community Cebu

  • Parish committee and Redemptorist Youth Ministry delivering food packages and shopping to those who are vulnerable

Vietnam:

The Vietnamese authorities have announced a nationwide lockdown to start from midnight on 31 March until 15 April. People are being advised to stay at home. Essential services will remain open. People will be allowed to leave home to buy food and medicine, but you should practice social distancing, wear facemasks in public areas, and not congregate with more than one person, with some exceptions (e.g. hospitals). You should follow the instructions of local authorities to avoid being fined or prosecuted

The Vietnamese authorities have introduced a large number of measures to limit the spread of the virus, including banning the entry of foreigners and the widespread quarantine of anyone who may have come in to contact with coronavirus. Vietnam has also closed tourist areas, non-essential shops and services (including bars and restaurants), particularly in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.

Centre for Sustainable Development Studies (CSDS)

  • Closed