DAKAR, Senegal, June 18, 2020/ — A total of 500 families of low-income households in Senegal have received essential food and household items, as the SEED Project (www.SEEDProject.org) concludes today, the first phase of its COVID-19 Relief Packages Campaign – providing temporary relief to families with children.
The COVID-19 crisis has not only been threatening lives and the health of many, but has also proven to impose additional rippling challenges. One of these great challenges being food security where numerous individuals, particularly youth, have an undersupply of sufficient, safe and/or nutritious food due to a lack of ‘physical, social, and/or economic’ means.
“With schools now closed in Senegal and livelihoods being compromised, SEED Project is conscious of a double negative impact the COVID-19 crisis has on vulnerable populations concerning access to food” stated SEED Project President Joseph Lopez, “embarking on this COVID-19 Relief Packages Campaign to supply essential household survival items such as pasta, rice, sugar, cooking oil, eggs, chicken and flour is by no means a solution, but it does provide much needed temporarily relief, which can make all the difference to families”.
Led by former SEED Academy students, a total of about 25 SEED alumni embarked on the relief campaign in the five towns of Thies, Pire, Saint Louis, Tivaouane and Yeumbeul.
“All of us are originally from one of these towns, and SEED Project had helped educate, equip and empower us to have more opportunities. I personally transitioned to received my bachelor’s degree in the US and now I’m a professional scout for the Denver Nuggets.”, said SEED Alumnus Dethie Fall, “It’s important to us Alumni that we re-assure the disadvantaged groups of the greater SEED community that they are not left behind, they are not forgotten – with SEED, we will always come back and do what we can with what we have”.
SEED Gives is the community service activity under the SEED Scholars Program, that provides a platform for all SEED Alumni to perform outreach activities initiated by them. An on-ground SEED Alumna, Mame Fatou Konaré currently in her third year of college and pursuing her degree in Logistics and Transportation noted, “we are providing to others yet, this service adds to my own sense of value. It means a lot to be a woman here leading this campaign and having young girls in this town see me, as an example of hope”.
In addition to the food items, SEED COVID Relief Packsacks include cleaning products, reminding populations of the increased importance of hygiene and sanitation practices, during the COVID pandemic. The Campaign has been entirely funded through donations by ‘SEED friends’, SEED Alumni and private corporations including Senegal’s SEDIMA Group.
With a direct target of 500 families, an estimated 3,500 people, including children and youth have been directly impacted.