Posted in GATE, News

Covid-19 Impact

Apr 20 2020

Covid-19 has disrupted the lives of thousands around the globe. Gan visited our GATE students in April to find out how their families had been impacted.

The girls in our GATE program have been on our minds a lot lately, along with our facilitator in Thailand. Gan is a devoted nurse who tirelessly volunteers her time to help identify students in need, and visits them to gather reports. She is always busy, but even more so lately. To date nearly 2400 people have tested Covid-19+ in Thailand, including those living in the northern Thailand areas of Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai. Making matters worse, they are also currently experiencing a large wildland/bush fire which is further reducing resources and adversely impacting those living with breathing conditions such as asthma.

Gan recently made a quick visit to our students at their homes, and spent time going over important information with the families such as proper handwashing/hygiene, staying home, physical distancing, and wearing masks. Thailand is currently under a nationwide stay-at-home and physical distancing order in order to slow the spread, or “flatten the curve” of the virus. The school year ended in March, so all of our students are currently home with their families for the summer. Families who are subsistence farmers remain in their homes and work plots of land, although drought has once again been an issue this year. Those who are day laborers are unable to work at this time due to the stay-at-home order.

Thailand has done an impressive job in keeping the spread of the virus under control thus far, but we do not yet know when the students will be able to return to school, or when parents will be allowed to return to work. Like many of us, they are living with uncertainty right now. We reassured everyone that we will be there for them should they need  additional support, and we are so happy to have Nurse Gan available to monitor the wellbeing of the children and their families.