As Bangladesh’s first response was to flatten the curve through encouraging people to stay at home and maintain social distancing, Spreeha immediately identified potential changes in community people’s livelihood, their issue of safety, need for increased awareness, and access to healthcare and basic needs.
Spreeha is currently running the following programs in the Rayerbazar slum community and in many parts of the country as part of the COVID-19 response:
Emergency Relief Support
- Food Supply: To contain the chance of community transmission in underprivileged community, Spreeha arranges food supply for families and individuals who cannot afford basic food because of the ongoing emergency. Initially starting with Rayerbazar community, Spreeha’s food supply project extended to people living in Kallyanpur Slum, Mirpur, Sylhet tea gardens, Gazipur, Chattagram, Barishal, Naogaon, and to many individuals who reached out to us for emergency assistance. The food supply pack contains Rice, Potato, lentil, oil and onion, some basics for daily food intake.
- Hygiene Material Supply: Especially among underprivileged community, importance of hygiene became secondary due to current financial constraints which can cause the contamination go even higher. With Food supply, Spreeha distributed hygiene materials to encourage good hygiene practice and hand washing to prevent corona virus transmission.
- Essential Drug Supply: Currently flu like symptoms cold, cough and fever are at highest pick and common drugs supply can reduce people`s movement. This package contains the following: Anti-fever medicine, Anti-cold medicine 10 tablets, and Vitamin C supplement. Spreeha’s pharmacy is also open to cater to the need of prescribed essential drugs, if needed.
- Mask Distribution: With help from partner organizations, Spreeha’s community workers also distribute mask among underprivileged communities in Rayerbazar and Kallyanpur. They also educate community people on the proper use, disinfection procedure, and discarding procedure for face mask.
An Online Doctor Helpline portal has been opened as part of our telemedicine service through which patients are now able to access doctor consultation anytime from the comfort of their home. Be it primary health counselling or for COVID-19 related advice, a pool of doctors are available to provide any free consultations round the clock.
Healthcare for All during COVID-19
With uppermost protection, Spreeha healthcare center is providing healthcare to the underprivileged community at Rayerbazar. To ensure reduced chance of coronavirus transmission from healthcare service provider to patient and patient to patient, following measures have been taken:
- Ensure hand sanitization during entry and exit from healthcare center with 70% alcohol solution
- Ensure each patient is wearing mask
- Ensure social distance in waiting zone and during providing service
- Monitor temperature by non-touch method (thermal gun)
- Continuous cleaning of the surfaces – desk, flood, door handle, instrument, etc. with 70% alcohol based solution
- People with flu like symptoms are encouraged to stay home and take treatment via phone call
- Every staff in the healthcare center is fully equipped with PPEs
Screening for Malnourished Under-5 Children
Screening for malnourished under 5 children is part of our regular program. Previously, we used to conduct it at our preschool premise. Since a lot of underprivileged families are going without access to nutritious food, access to physical activities and development in their small 10ft by 10ft rooms, we are taking growth monitoring of under 5 children from these families into serious consideration during COVID-19. Our community workers are conducting at home malnourishment screening with uppermost precaution and reporting our doctors time to time. If any child is found malnourished or undernourished, we are connecting their parents with our doctors at healthcare center.
At Home Care for Expecting Mothers
Spreeha’s regular moms’ club activity works toward increasing scope of mother-child healthcare, mental health care and recreation for underprivileged soon-to-be moms. Due to COVID-19 outbreak, we had to postpone our outhouse moms’ club activity and meetings. Instead, our community health workers are conducting home visits to check on pregnant mothers; we are encouraging them to avail telemedicine to reduce the scope of infection; we are educating them on at home care during the pregnancy period and also providing them with appropriate referral service. Pregnant mothers can directly reach out to our community health worker in case of emergency.
Door to Door Counselling and Awareness
Community workers are working to create awareness about what is corona virus, how to prevent it, what to do if you have flu like symptoms and encourage for online doctor consultation rather than go to healthcare center.
Taking Schools to Home
Our students at Rayerbazar have been in the house for the last four months. The lockdown has been unsettling for the young minds who cannot step out of home and interact with the outer world. With highest precautions, we are taking schools to their home so that they can keep themselves engaged in study, crafting, book reading, writing and vision setting.
Operational Assistance to Other Organizations through Crowdfuding
Spreeha has been assisting Choloshobai.com, the first ever online crowd funding platform in Bangladesh, to manage and disburse funds for different organizations and individuals for their COVID-19 response projects.
PPE for Healthcare Professional
During COVID-19, healthcare system is struggling to stay equipped with the changing time. Spreeha has been part of some groundbreaking initiatives taken up by our partner organizations. EMK Center, Wizkit, YY Goshti have come up with “3D-printed face shields”. Ananta Garments, Olwel, BUET Alumni have also come together to distribute Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for healthcare professionals. Spreeha has been part of their projects both in receiving PPEs for our in-house healthcare professionals and in distributing those PPEs among others.
Spreeha Bangladesh inspires change by empowering people. With use of creative solutions, Spreeha enables individuals and communities to rise above social barriers. Spreeha envisions a world where people and communities are empowered to achieve their full potential.
Spreeha Bangladesh Foundation is a Bangladesh based social enterprise established in 2012, and was registered under the Trust Act II of 1882, on 7thMay, 2014. It is also registered with NGO Affairs Bureau (Reg. 2957, dated 13th August, 2015) for receiving foreign donations and grants.
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