COVID-19 has officially reached Constanza, and our team is playing a critical role in the local response. Below is a brief summary of the actions we've taken in the last week alone to combat the virus' spread, keep families afloat, and assist local authorities and providers who are stretched for capacity.
Donating Medical Supplies and Protective Sanitary Equipment
Educating Residents on How to Stay Safe and Informed
- On Friday, we purchased protective gear for the entire hospital staff of Constanza -- 30 hazmat suits, 15 n95 masks, and 15 visors
- We also purchased 30 additional hazmat suits for the city's emergency service and waste management workers who are putting themselves at risk to provide essential services during this time
- Over the weekend, we helped Constanza's mayor source 20 new hand washing stations from Wine to Water, one of Puente's wonderful partner organizations in the DR
- The stations are currently being placed in every high-traffic location that remains open during the shutdown (clinics, grocery stores, etc.)
- City Hall has agreed to sanitize each station on an hourly basis and refill the hand soap supplies as needed
- Earlier last week, we donated >100 protective masks and pairs of latex gloves to Constanza's medical clinics
- In total, we've now donated nearly $2,000 worth of equipment directly to Constanza's healthcare providers and government workers serving on the front lines of the ongoing battle against COVID-19
- All these donations are requested by the city's mayor and director of local healthcare clinics. We anticipate them coming to us with more needs in the coming weeks, so please consider donating to help us respond quickly as the situation evolves
Providing Financial Support to our Employees and Volunteers
- On Thursday, we created an instructional video on how to build a DIY hand washing station. This video is going viral in the DR and has been viewed >100,000 times!
- Our Executive Director Scott Coppa learned this tactic out of necessity as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Constanza -- his house did not have reliable running water, so he built a station like this and found himself washing his hands far more frequently
- Early last week, we sent text messages to every resident in communities where Puente has completed a project providing additional guidance on hand washing, social distancing, and relying on real news
- Throughout the week, we've posted additional social media content and shared updates from reliable news sources in the DR. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram to view these posts and more
Please note that this response is only possible thanks to the generosity of people like you. We have raised and deployed over $3,000 in the past week, and we will continue to use 100% of every donation for COVID-19 relief. Please consider helping out if your family can afford to do so during this challenging time.
- We have now provided >$1,000 in total to the families of our employees and volunteers as they gear up for a painful period of isolation without usual paychecks coming in