ARS in the time of COVID-19: The Augustinian Response
The Augustinian Relief Services (ARS) is the humanitarian arm of the Santo Nino de Cebu Augustinian Social Development Foundation, Inc (SNAF) set in motion during the COVID-19 outbreak. Undertaken through the template of SNAF’s adaptation of church-managed disaster risk reduction and management, this program provides the most basic human need, namely, food, shelter, clothing, and even medical care. A solidarity appeal is launched to give opportunities to people who are willing to share their resources. This operates with a system that can help empower a group of people, enabling them to better deal with their own problems by giving them the capacities necessary to address those problems in developmental and sustainable ways. Activities therein include relief operations for disaster-stricken community both by natural and human-induced causes and other aids in the forms of referrals such as legal and medical.
The dreadful COVID-19 has caused the disruption of so many fabrics of human existence and that of the society. The Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) sets the tone of change the way things are normally done in order to flatten the curve of transmission of the virus. The Augustinian Province of Santo Nino de Cebu through SNAF’s ARS and the Basilica Minore del Santo Nino de Cebu respond to the call of the time by being in solidarity with those who cannot fend for themselves. Assistance in the temporary shelter for the homeless and the production of Personal Protective Equipments (PPEs) are among the concrete expressions of solidarity alongside the provision of rice for the vendors and the urban poor.
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