In a few months time, the lives of many people have changed a lot, in the Netherlands, but also here in Angola. Since 3 weeks, if I have counted correctly, preventive measures against Covid-19 have also started here. There are currently 24 confirmed patients with Corona in Angola, 2 of whom have died. It was decided at an early stage to close the borders and allow very little air traffic. Many shops have soap and water in front of the entrances and the floor indicates where to stand in line. To go with these rules in local markets is almost impossible. There are quite a lot of people you see walking around with masks (homemade or not).
This situation also has consequences for my work, because we cannot continue the prevention work at the moment. I do go to the hospital for a few hours 2-3 times a week with a colleague to visit the patients there. This is necessary because, for example, some women sometimes contract an infection or malaria in the vila and do not always take action. So we have to urge them to go to the hospital (300 meters away), to make an appointment with a doctor. At the moment, however, there are only 13 patients left, of which all but one have had surgery in the past month and most of them are waiting for the next operation, because unfortunately they have not yet recovered. With some regularity we have to explain that they cannot go home between treatments, because not much traffic is allowed. Many taxis often have too many people, which is not desirable in this situation. With this in mind, you can imagine that life has changed considerably for many Angolans and it is not easy. Angolan women with children as well as elderly are expected to stay at home as much as possible, if their work is not "essential", so to speak. This means that some of my Angolan colleagues are also at home.
On April 25, it was decided that the lock-down will continue, but with slightly less restrictions, taxis will start driving again, with half the amount of passengers and a little more people will be working again, schools and churches will remain closed. In the meantime I try to read something, which is not really my hobby, but I do it every now and then. And I do some administrative work for the job, such as developing a booklet (with pictures only) with health topics for the patients going back home. I started with a vlog, so if you are curious, please subscribe to my newsletter.
Like everyone else, I hope that this will be over soon. This whole situation affects so many people financially and therefore in their basic needs, but also hardly any patients arrive at the hospital, which unfortunately does not mean that they are not there… so on the one hand we want to prevent people from getting sick with Corona, but on the other hand we know that many people are sick from malaria and other diseases but we cannot help ... difficult choices. Please pray for the government to make wise decisions in this, led by God! This week we heard that the government is reaching out to people with great basic needs. Also we are preparing, in collaboration with Angolan people we know, some bags with basic products so that we can help families, who most need it.
Fortunately, I can still go out myself! This weekend with my roommate and 2 others we went for a walk in nature, that felt like a gift. Here in the city, we need specific documents to circulate on the streets. And a number of cars here on the compound have those, so that helps. It is really checked whether you have a reason to go out on the street, after a certain time of the day, because shopping is allowed.
Something completely different, with which I return to my previous blog. My visa application has passed! It has been extended until February 2021!