COVID-19 Hits PNG
Surprise, surprise! Due to Covid restrictions, all plans for advancing the work of Haus Pikinini have been put on hold. Schools were suspended after only one month’s functioning and students sent home. With no end to restrictions in sight and Covid-19 in our town, we are glad to keep the children home where our Early Childhood learning teacher can assist them in their home learning. Since no schools are operating this is better than nothing. March has come and gone and we anticipate no changes for some time. All staff who were outside are now back living on our property, albeit with restricted movement.
Changes were necessary so eight of our children who have at least one parent were sent to stay with them and we provide external support, some food, medicine and clothing and pay school fees for them. This is not ideal but we had to lay off non-essential staff, curb visits by relatives and prevent children from coming and going. Neither we nor the children with their parent are happy with the arrangement and we long to have them back.
A Right Understanding Needed
Considered a “white man’s disease,” people lacking education and understanding in the valley did not believe Covid would hit them so they failed to take the necessary precautions. Some felt that, as Christians, they were immune and invincible so it was of little use for me to try and dispute this. My focus has been on educating my staff and stressing the importance of keeping the rules.
Now that we have many cases of Covid in PNG and 19 in our small town, they are blaming sorcery and the poor sick people have been thrown out of the hospital and taken to a safe location for their own protection. One of the families concerned are our neighbours and they, amongst others, have had their house burned down.
A Day at a Time
So, here we are in our little “island-compound” with 18 children instead of 26 plus the other people who live here. Our one longing is that the pandemic would end. If you care to help us survive the pandemic and prepare for future advance you can contribute by clicking on the “Donate to this project” button on the right sidebar and follow the prompts.