[Port-au-Prince] – The United States Government, through the United States Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance, has provided $1 million to Catholic Relief Services to help Haiti respond to the COVID-19 outbreak. The funding will support the Haitian Government’s National COVID-19 Response Plan, led by the Haitian Ministry of Public Health and Population with support from the Ministry of Interior’s Directorate for Civil Protection. With this support, Catholic Relief Services and local implementing partner Caritas Haiti, through their program Nap Kwape Kowona will focus on reducing widespread transmission of COVID-19 among urban populations in Port-au-Prince, Cap Haitian, Gonaives, and Les Cayes through:
● Establishing and managing handwashing stations at strategic points throughout major cities;
● Engaging trusted voices – community health workers and community leaders – in the promotion of positive behaviors that help prevent the transmission of the virus in at-risk urban centers;
● Supporting Ministry of Public Health and Population efforts in infection prevention and control, and case management by establishing COVID-19 case management centers and training for staff on mental health and psychosocial support messaging and frontline staff care;
● Integrating protection principles at all levels of project implementation, including staff training, beneficiary interaction, and ensuring that people’s needs are anticipated and responded to throughout the pandemic.
U.S. Ambassador to Haiti, Michele Sison, stated, “we at the U.S. Mission in Haiti, and of course our partners, are committed to reducing the spread of COVID-19 in Haiti and helping communities overcome the effects of this pandemic.” Furthermore, USAID Haiti Mission Director Christopher Cushing added, “USAID is proud to partner with Catholic Relief Services in launching Nap Kwape Kowona, which will help us to assist more Haitian communities. Importantly, this project will also support the psychological effects of the virus, to ensure a holistic and comprehensive response to COVID-19.”
For more than 60 years, Catholic Relief Services has worked in Haiti partnering with the Catholic Church, the Government of Haiti, and more than 200 faith-based and community-based organizations to encourage Haitians to drive their own recovery and development. Because an infectious disease threat anywhere can become a threat everywhere, Catholic Relief Services aims to reach more than 116,000 Haitians with awareness campaigns and community prevention and selected COVID-19 case management centers to distribute hygiene kits to families in need.
USAID continues to provide vital assistance to Haiti to help Haiti respond to COVID-19. This assistance is in addition to USAID’s long-term reconstruction and development support, which promotes economic growth, job creation and agricultural development, provides basic health care and education services, and supports governance reforms. For more information on USAID’s work in Haiti, please visit: www.usaid.gov/haiti
For more information on the overall CRS response, please visit: https://www.crs.org/media-center/current-issues/coronavirus-facts-and-how-help