We're incredibly proud of - and incredibly dependent on - our local partners who work with communities in places we'd struggle to engage directly. Our partners are an wonderfully varied group of people, and we love their range of gifts and personalities. But they all share a similar, faith-based vision and passion to ours: to walk with the poor and assist them in improving their livelihoods. Perhaps a few paraphrased verses from the second chapter of the New Testament book of Philippians best sums up our feelings towards them: 'We regularly give thanks for our partnership with them in the Good News of Jesus, convinced that He who began a good work in them will sustain them in it until the day it is finished'.
As you can understand, our partners have all been heavily impacted by the COVID-19 situation, and in a variety of ways. Some of our partners have been able to quite easily pause their community work, and will simply carry on where they left off once things settle. Other partners have lost significant sources of income and are attempting to support their staff despite that. Still others have been able to use their community-level networks to provide education around COVID-19 at very little cost, even though they are not permitted to visit those communities at this time.
We're keeping in regular contact with each our partners through this time, and although we are unable to visit them, we will be supporting them in a variety of ways including wage subsidies and the flexibility to use existing funds to help them and the communities they serve survive through the COVID-19 pandemic.