Dear JPIC brethren, from Guinea Bissau, I want to share with you some initiatives that have been carried out and are still ongoing in the Franciscan Mission and Parish of Quinhamel, 30 km from the capital.
For the Coronavirus emergency, which broke out here in March 2020, the Franciscan Catholic Mission used some Diocesan Caritas funds for:
- Promoting the initiative of young volunteers, both from the church and other religious denominations, to do prevention activities throughout the parish by going door to door;
- 30 villages have been covered, and the initiative continues.
- Using a chlorine solution to teach correct hand sanitisation technique to people. In addition, we distributed chlorine for sanitisation to entire villages and retail markets;
- explaining how to avoid contagion and what to do in case of sick people with suspected symptoms of infection;
- Covering entire villages with posters and photocopies with images that are understandable to many illiterate people;
- Bought and distributed rice, cooking oil, soap and sugar for some poor families;
- Paid medicines to some sick and poor people;
- Provided sanitising chlorine to the Regional Health Directorate for the health centres in the region, and to the police for public transport passenger checkpoints.
With donations from other entities we have:
- Purchased and distributed bins and buckets with handwashing taps;
- Cleaned up garbage and sanitised the Quinhamel market;
- Provided other Civil Society associations in our area with masks, alcohol gels, posters and flyers to cover the region.
We are currently doing a broader census of people suffering from hunger to distribute promises of aid that have been made to us from many quarters.
The parish priest (Brother Michael Daniels) has promoted these initiatives in the name of the Franciscan Mission in Quinhamel.
Brother Michael Daniels, OFM
JPIC Animator, Custody of St. Francis of Assisi
Quinhamel, Guinea Bissau