Because we all have equal rights
UN humanitarian aid to the migrant and refugee population in the days of COVID-19
Let's say their names are Omar, Mayra and the little Karen. They arrived in Peru like many of their compatriots, in search of a better future. They remind us of so many Peruvians who once migrated to other countries with the same enthusiasm.
Little by little things seemed to improve for them. With their effort and the support of many Peruvians, they began to move forward. The hard work of Omar and Mayra was hard but recognized for its quality. Meanwhile, little Karen began studying with her new Peruvian classmates. "We can do it" - thought Omar.
But nobody had COVID-19 in mind
When the pandemic arose, the Peruvian government organized the response immediately. Through its institutions and official records, a large number of Peruvians in a vulnerable situation have been able to access the assistance provided by the State, various organizations and the private sector.
However, it was also necessary to assist thousands of families such as Omar’s and Mayra's, made up of migrant citizens or refugees who were already living in situations of vulnerability.
The United Nations in Peru, while continuing its support to Peru in the context of COVID-19 and in close coordination with the government, organized humanitarian assistance for thousands of refugee and migrant families.
The UN responds
The UN Peru Resident Coordinator responded to the Government´s request to distribute food donated by the private sector and administered by the National Institute of Civil Defense (INDECI) to 5,000 refugee families and vulnerable migrants, in its majority from Venezuela.
UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency and the International Organization for Migration (IOM), with the support of the World Food Program (WFP) and the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), organized the delivery of food and water kits to cover the minimum needs in this period of health emergency. UNICEF, UNESCO and PAHO/WHO participated also in the distribution process.
Access to health, education, food, among other rights, do not depend on citizenship or on a migratory condition, even less when going through a health emergency.
"This is a crisis that calls for solidarity and the UN will continue working for people in situation of greatest vulnerability," said Igor Garafulic, Resident Coordinator of the United Nations System in Peru.
Produced by: ONU PERÚ. To view the complete photo essay, originally published via ONU PERÚ exposure's page, please click here.