A message from our CEOMarch 24, 2020
Dear Friend of INA,
No one is immune or invincible and we all require common sense approaches and safe practices. Isaiah has written, “Go home, my people and lock your doors and hide yourselves for a little while until the Lord’s anger has passed” in Isaiah 26:20. This is not God’s punishment, as the spread is due to a multitude of variables. However, the advice, thousands of years later, is valid and sensible. Let’s self-isolate as far as possible (other than for essential shopping or services) and support the health system to deal with those who really need their services.
Our humble thanks to you, who continue to support the most vulnerable through INA. Charitable giving lessens the sense of hopelessness and powerlessness. We are still able to try and prevent the most vulnerable from suffering the most. Even with alarming numbers in Australia, we are still the “lucky country”. We have welfare payments, stimulus packages, pensions, superannuation and an excellent health system that we are grateful for. Those you support have very little or none of what we can resort to. Therefore, your continued support is that much more appreciated!
The majority of INA staff in Melbourne are working from home. We will follow government guidelines and will notify you in case of a complete lockdown. We have called off all face-to-face interactions as well as halting all domestic and international travel for monitoring or visiting projects.
We are currently in discussions with all the partners in the field to find out exactly how they are proactively positioning themselves to ensure the communities they serve and staff are safe. Most of these communities have very little water resources for frequent hand-washing or even basic sanitation. Self-isolation is non-existent when the whole family may be in one small room.
So, protecting the communities from even one infection is paramount – as if anyone gets infected, we are looking at a very high cost and reversing all the development gains and benefit your support has achieved to date.
We may need to do even more in the coming weeks and months to protect the most vulnerable. We may have to halt or slow down interaction in the field immediately, but when this pandemic is over, their needs will be even greater.
So, thank you for not deserting the most vulnerable at this hour of need – even if we are all at risk.
Please stay safe and healthy. Our prayers are with you and your loved ones.
Pri Fernando – CEO, INA
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