COVID-19: Updates on India and Sponsor Sites

We at Chalice are closely monitoring updates on the current coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. We are working diligently to ensure that our operations continue safely. We will continue to update all of our supporters with the most recent information we have regarding our response to COVID-19.

Sponsored children and site updates

India – As the COVID-19 situation continues to escalate catastrophically, the sponsor site staff are continuing to serve the families in their sites. Following all government guidelines and using PPE, they are ensuring the sponsored children have access to education, nutrition, and healthcare. Families circles are not meeting.

Donate Now to help our sites in India provide families with food, cleaning products, surgical three-layer masks, face shields, cloth masks, and hand sanitizer.

Haiti – Haiti has been struggling with significant political upheaval and contracting economy from before the COVID-19 pandemic. Demonstrations and violent crimes have made families in Haiti afraid for their safety. Food security is a primary and growing concern. The pandemic closed their borders, cutting off crucial food imports from Dominican Republic and international suppliers – making groceries expensive and limited. Likewise, parents are having difficulty accessing materials for their small businesses, such as chicken feed, and many have temporarily shut down their only source of income.

Ghana – Our sites in Ghana are working at a mostly normal capacity with the exception of abiding to gathering limits. The communities are stable and the market, banks, and other public places are open.

Kenya – Many regions in Kenya are following lockdown orders. Families are struggling with increased prices of common goods, job loss, and curfews. The schools are now closed for holidays, and it is uncertain if they will reopen as usual in May. Vaccinations are becoming available, especially in Nairobi.

Tanzania – The site staff in Tanzania are continuing to serve the families and attend to their needs, but with no gatherings for meetings and as few visits to homes as possible. Site staff are working within all COVID-19 protocols given by the Ministry of Health.

Zambia – The sites continue to work but are under tight restrictions around in-person interactions. The communities are doing well adhering to public health guidelines.

Bolivia – The families are struggling with the socio-economic impact of the long-term restrictions. Many have lost their usual form of income, or had their hours reduced. 70% of families in La Paz have begun home businesses and localized trade markets.

Chile – The sites have continued to work virtually, using online messaging and video calls. There have been cases of sponsored children contracting the virus. The country is facing a deep economic crisis, with small businesses and street vendors closing permanently. Families are worried about paying deferred utility bills.

Guatemala – Site staff are continuing to communicate with families of sponsored children through mobile and online platforms. They are living with strict preventative health measures, including restricting meetings, occupancy in stores and markets, and food service. Families are experiencing fear because the hospitals are overburdened.

Paraguay – Staff are continuing to work, abiding by strict health regulations and protocols. Families are mourning the losses of people within their communities, including elders. They are also struggling with job loss or the closure of their small businesses. The Ayolas area is considered a “red zone” because the positivity rates are high for a small community.

Peru – Sites are operating under very tight restrictions, and new infections are constant, and there have unfortunately been fatalities as well. The Cañete and Chiclayo sites are currently considered “extreme risk” zones. Hospitals have reached their capacity, so most families are choosing to recover at home.

Bangladesh – The country is deeply affected by COVID-19 and is experiencing a rapid increase in cases and fatalities. All offices, schools, colleges, and public transit went under a 14-day closure to try to curb the spread.

The Philippines – Manila and the surrounding four provinces underwent strict lockdown procedures from the end of March to mid-April. Since then, the government has eased restrictions, allowing for some mobility for staff and families while observing precautions. In the more remote region of Samar, the situation is controlled and site operations and community life are relatively normal while abiding by all public health guidelines.

Current updates on Chalice office operations:

-We are still open during our regular hours, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. AST, Monday to Friday. As of April 26, 2021, most of our Canadian staff are currently working from home. Those working in-office are adhering to strict COVID protocols and restrictions.

-All Parish appeals are suspended until further notice due to the Canadian government’s recommendation to limit social gatherings.

-All international staff travel is suspended until further notice.

-Our missions have been cancelled until further notice. We cannot reasonably plan for our next mission until the pandemic has passed, international travel restrictions are lifted, and travel would not expose our Chalice family (in Canada and abroad) to an unreasonable level of risk.

-We are working diligently to ensure that all of our programs continue to run effectively, and that all donations and funds continue to be sent to our sponsor sites in a timely manner.