In our urban refugee program in Jakarta, PURE+, CWS staff have acted together with group home residents to respond quickly to COVID-19 risks. There was deep cleaning in each of four homes to start. At the same time our security guards, who have a lot of responsibilities for the homes’ safety, were learning the facts about the corona virus. The also learned how to use temperature scanners, which they will be using often in the coming weeks and months. Additional sinks for handwashing, whose use the guards watch over, have been added at each home’s entrance.
Refugee volunteers with health care and medical background have also led info-sessions for unaccompanied boys and girls and young women and their children in our residents’ native languages: Dari (Farsi), Somali and Arabic. The volunteers talked primarily about personal hygiene, with an emphasis on ways in which good hygiene helps prevent the virus’s spread.
For some weeks now, everybody entering a group home is having her or his temperature checked. So far, no unduly high temperatures are reported, but isolation rooms are ready in case anybody shows COVID-19 symptoms.
As recommended, and sadly for the children and young people who participate in PURE+ activities, all sports and gatherings involving more than 10 people have been postponed.
Finally, information about the coronavirus and prevention of transmission has also been shared with the many in the Jakarta refugee community with informational poster in seven languages posted at the Community Centers and shared through Refugee Representatives. CWS staff are working with UNHCR to ensure that refugees, including the 100-plus unaccompanied children we care for, continue to have access to health care services, including medical treatment.
“Thanks for being strict about the coronavirus. It’s good to decrease the number of people going in and out” [of our house].
– Nusrah*, Somali refugee living in the Aspirasi girls’ and women’s home
“I’m glad that CWS held an info-session and has helped us apply good rules [in the home] about Coroavirus. Thanks”.
– Fatimah*, Afghan refugee living in the Aspirasi home
“Words cannot express how grateful we are for your kindness and generosity. Thank you so much for being here for us”.
– Mohammad*, Somali Refugee Volunteer
- *the names are not real names.