We'd like to begin this by saying thank you. We need more people like you, who are willing to take a few steps to help others, especially in these dire times.
The lockdown in Nigeria in the last few weeks have created challenges for many of us, some more than others. For the lucky few, it has been perhaps a bit more than what you would define as a minor inconvenience, but the more vulnerable in our society have hit a major hurdle— financial or otherwise.
The president of Nigeria, over the weekend, promised that the lockdown will be lifted on the 4th of May to "drive the economy", but the fact still remains that, until this pandemic is managed, economic and social activities will suffer.
But it is in times like these that we witness how willing people are to look out for one another. Asides from noticing the increase in the average number of purchases categorised under "Charity" since the lockdown, our personal project has shown us how ready you are to help!
We recently partnered with Feed Your Neighbour (FYN), a nonprofit organisation dedicated to helping struggling low-income families and communities through these COVID-19 times.
During the lockdown, FYN gave cooked food to communities they worked with, hiring the community vendors and patronising their kiosks, in an effort to keep their finances running. Even before the "relaxed lockdown" was announced, they began distributing protective gloves and face masks to help contain the spread; they intend to intensify this effort when movement resumes.
We announced that we'd be donating N5000 for every donation of N5000 or above sent to FYN's gomoney account and in no time, we had donations pouring in.
FYN is a great initiative and every day, we see their impact expand. But, we are aware that they are only operational in Lagos, and there are different needs at this time. So for those who are looking for inspiration or for other places or ways to donate, here are some other charities:
Donate to local clinics and hospitals: even if they are not coronavirus treatment centres, they're still at risk of attending to undiagnosed coronavirus patients.
• Angel Among Us: A tool created for people with relatively secure financial statuses to support individuals around Nigeria, whose means of livelihood has been affected by COVID-19. It's a simple help page where every potential beneficiary has a short note stating what's going on in their lives and how your donation would help.
• Feed your Neighbour: A nonprofit organisation dedicated to helping struggling low income families and communities in Lagos through these COVID-19 times. They provide food, masks, gloves and coronavirus sensitisation outreaches.
• The Tahara Collective: A religious NGO fostering economic development and safe spaces for Muslims. In response to COVID-19, The Tahara Collective have developed a relief project to support vulnerable communities and families in Lagos, Ogun and Abuja. According to their recount, they have provided food and safety needs to over 2,000 families in 18 communities, since they launched this project on the 27th of March.
• Cov Observatory: An initiative dedicated to monitoring the impact of the coronavirus on Nigerians and Nigeria's most vulnerable, while highlighting organisations that are active on the ground and helping define potential interventions. If you would like to follow how the Pandemic is evolving in Nigeria, or want first hand information on how you can help people in your locale, Cov Observatory is doing the work to list and analyse what these organisations are doing or reporting.
Note: At over N20 for bank transfers, your cost of donation can start to add up. You can cut this cost by from your gomoney account at only N8.50 for transfers. And if you'd like to create a donation pool with friends, even better! You can create a split group with other gomoney users to cut down the costs of transfer ❤️
Even with the relaxed lockdown, there's still an impending risk of increased domestic violence cases. Below is a list of support lines: Follow the above link to find an extensive list of domestic violence organisations in all parts of Nigeria.
Some confirmed interstate private initiatives:
• ACTS Generation (aid for both men and women)
• Lagos State Domestic & Sexual Violence Response – 08137960048, 09062887843
• Office of the Public Defender: 07080601080
The anxiety and stress from the information overload might be affecting people in different ways. For those with preexisting mental health conditions, it may mean they need extra support. Mentally Aware Nigeria Initiative (MANI) provides a community of listeners and psychology professionals who provide adequate support in-house and can refer to safe, reliable external help when needed.
Stay safe and stay healthy!