COVID-19: Zoom Calls, Eat, Sleep and Repeat
If You Can, take a Minute to Help
The global pandemic has changed the way we all live, and the “new normal” has understandably made us focus on our own situation. Life seems to be a constant string of video conference calls, whether it’s for business or with family and friends, eating, Netflix, sleep and repeat. Despite the isolation measures that are in place globally, with the hyper connected world we live in, you could argue you’ve never had more contact with people than before. Nevertheless, reconnecting with old friends and distant family members, especially those we know are living alone, as we cannot begin to understand how their isolation journey feels.
Our front-line workers, our heroes, have never been more appreciated as we try to imagine being in their place and facing the risk while helping others in need.
Working in the tech industry, at A10 Networks, I am extremely grateful that I have been able to easily transition to working from home. If anything, work is even busier as all our initial marketing programs have had to pivot to virtual platforms to achieve as close to business as usual. There are so many people who are not as fortunate and have either been furloughed, made redundant or simply told not to come back tomorrow.
A10 Networks in the Local Community
The team in the Middle East have been working with Dubai Mums Helping Hands, Sanadeeg and the charity Stop and Help. We’ve taken a minute from our busy schedules and to help those families severely impacted by COVID-19. It’s an amazing charity that connects sponsors to families and 100 percent of the money donated makes it to families who need it most. They all come from different backgrounds but have all been impacted as COVID-19 does not discriminate. Below is some information about the amazing families we visited during the holy month of Ramadan to hear their stories, let them know they are not alone and help them during this exceptional time.
Dubai is a tourism and leisure industry hub and COVID-19 has led to a huge amount of companies shutting down almost overnight to try and help stop the spread of the virus. This has come at a huge cost to so many peoples’ livelihood, and in more severe cases, it is pushing them into poverty. I have reviewed all of the Stop and Help family applications and it is a constant stream of similar situations: no work-no pay, reduced salaries, delayed salaries, job loss. However, their needs for food and rent remain the same for these families supporting newborn babies, young children and close relatives.
The work we have done with Dubai Mums Helping Hands, Sanadeeg and Stop and Help will feed thirty-seven families for three weeks. Hopefully in that time, we will see further decrease in new infections and the economy start to re-open so these families can return to work and not have to worry how to feed their loved ones.
Meet the Families
Many of these families have been without salaries since March and are simply running out of food and essential items with no solution in sight.
Due to the timing of when Dubai went into lockdown, one family was caught in the visa processing system. Having resigned from work to begin a new job, they were not able to complete the visa transfer process. As a result, the father is unable to receive his final pay from the previous company, gain access to bank account and cannot begin working in the new job. This is a very difficult position for this young family to be in, especially with a 38-week-old baby. Despite their difficult situation, when the A10 team delivered the supplies they were in high spirits as it was clearly a huge relief for them to know they had enough food for the coming weeks as lockdown hopefully begins to ease.
Home or food?
It was difficult to tell exactly how many families were living in some of the apartments we visited during distribution as there were several room dividers in place. Even with the very limited space they are able to rent, with no work and no pay and reduced salaries, one family only had enough to pay for housing. I cannot fathom having to choose between keeping a roof over your heads or buying food to feed your family, which includes a one-year-old child. Again, the team were met by so many smiling faces as we delivered the families their essential supplies during these exceptionally difficult times.
Share what you can spare
If you would like to find out how you can help in your city or country search for Stop and Help on Facebook to find your local page. Every single contribution makes a difference no matter how big or small. Now, more than ever, it is a time to be grateful for what you have and share what you can spare.e grateful for what you have and share what you can spare.