COVID-19 and Compassion’s Work in Bangladesh

An in-depth look at the coronavirus pandemic in Bangladesh

Last Updated: 10/19/2020

A second wave of COVID-19 recently hit Bangladesh, and the country had nearly 80,000 active cases as of Oct. 15. The country is also dealing with its worst flood in a decade, which left half a million people homeless. It is believed that 72% of the population is unemployed due to movement restrictions and workplace closures. Half of the population is now food insecure, meaning they lack consistent access to enough safe and nutritious food to live a healthy life.

All Compassion group activities remain on hold. Compassion Bangladesh staff and local partners have been able to send 157,330 food packs and 158,888 hygiene kits to beneficiary families. Additionally, they have provided medical support to 2,242 people. They report that many families have no source of income, so they are providing necessary funds to buy daily essentials. They also maintain regular contact with children and caregivers through phone calls.

Woman with supplies

How is Compassion Currently Operating in Bangladesh?

Below, you will find the latest information on how Compassion is currently operating in Bangladesh, including status updates on center openings, letter delivery and gift delivery. This is the most current information we have, though it can change quickly. Please know that all children and their families are being checked in on regularly by staff, either in person or by phone, even if the Compassion center is not open for programming. Watch this video for a detailed explanation of how COVID-19 is affecting Compassion centers and how local partners are caring for each registered child during this season.

Are Development Centers Open?

Currently, all centers in Bangladesh are closed in order to abide by local guidelines. Staff members are working to create virtual programming activity, including videos and livestreams. They continue to call and check in on families, and in some communities they are able to visit children while obeying social distancing guidelines. Because of the generous support of sponsors and donors, they have been able to distribute 157,330 food packs and 158,888 hygiene kits to children and their families!

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child reading IconStory From the Field

Madhuri belongs to an Indigenous family in rural Bangladesh. A single mother, her work as a farmer has been severely impacted by the pandemic. When the crisis hit, migrant workers left the cities and returned home to their rural villages; the result was a bidding war between themselves and the local workers like Madhuri for farming contracts. Both groups are equally desperate and in need of an income.

Unable to win contracts, Madhuri tried to take out a loan, but creditors refused to lend her money. Emotionally exhausted and alone, she feared her mental health would spiral into the depression she experienced in the dark days before her twin daughters were registered in Compassion's program.

Thankfully, the Compassion center is by the family's side in their time of need. Five-year-old twins Asha and Bhorsha — whose names mean “hope” and “trust” in Bengali — receive food supplies every month, including 33 pounds of rice, 11 pounds of lentils, 11 pounds of potatoes, and a quart of soybean oil, plus soap and facemasks to help protect them from COVID-19.

In addition, a sponsor has been sending a monthly family gift that they have been able to use in place of Madhuri’s lost income.

Madhuri’s family’s blessings have not gone unnoticed by her neighbor, Monisha, who excitedly proclaims, “God has seen her suffering and now he is showering his blessings on Madhuri’s family!”

How can I pray for Bangladesh?

Pray for protection and provision for children and families who have been affected by the flooding. For more prayer resources, visit Compassion’s COVID-19 prayer page for prayer guides and a virtual prayer wall.

How Can I Help?

Sponsor a Child in Bangladesh
Give to Compassion’s COVID-19 Relief Fund
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