Issues Statement



ADRA EUROPE issues Statement on Covid-19 - 17th April 2020

Brussels, 17th April 2020 | ADRA Europe | Rue Belliard 4-6/8 | 1040 Brussels | Belgium

ADRA Europe’s statement on COVID-19 pandemic: WE ARE IN THIS TOGETHER

The last few weeks have caused fear, isolation, pain and loss, creating an uncertain future. ADRA exists for moments like this: to bring hope, relief, and innovative solutions to complex situations and "to serve so all may live as God intended".

As we confront this pandemic crisis with our partners, we are serving on the frontlines by providing shelter and food for the homeless, supporting healthcare and mental health services, providing education, and helping vulnerable seniors, youth, children and families across the world.

As a global grassroots network and a faith-based organisation, ADRA is active locally, and on an international scale. Our development and humanitarian efforts have always been closely connected with local communities, and we expect that our response to the COVID-19 pandemic is going to accelerate long-lasting and sustainable solutions.

A Call for Solidarity

We are calling on to decision-makers and people of influence to consider the following:

An Appeal for Responsibility

Today’s crisis brings an unprecedented test of human solidarity. As an ADRA global community, we are expressing our appreciation to every individual and organisation for protective measures, quick adjustments, sparkling humour and spontaneous expressions of thankfulness. And, still there is a long way ahead of us. So, we are appealing to all decision-makers, persons of influence and every individual to act responsibly in the following three areas:

  1. We appeal to governments and individuals to consider measures to support the vulnerable and economically challenged when designing strategies to overcome economic damage caused by COVID-19. The economic consequences of the public-health measures through business closures and lockdowns will be borne disproportionately by those who are economically disadvantaged.
  2. We appeal for effective intergenerational solidarity. The seniors of our society are much more affected by the complications of COVID-19 and death rates are much higher among the elderly. Our young people are committed to show solidarity and self-isolate to prevent the spread of the virus itself. This pandemic may be an opportunity for inter-generational solidarity. On the one hand, young people remain dedicated to drastic short-term measures during the outbreak. On the other, the older generations need to make medium-term commitments for ambitious climate action. We appeal for lifestyle changes that will secure a more sustainable future for the younger generations.
  3. We appeal to the global community, governments and decision-makers to express tangible solidarity toward developing countries. At a time when national economies are experiencing severe losses, commitments to keep Official Development Assistance (ODA) might be diverted to other pressing national needs. However, developing countries will have to face even harder economic challenges and a longer road to recovery as their economies are more fragile.

    Solidarity with developing countries is a moral decision. Failure to pass this global solidarity test will leave deep wounds in countries left behind, paving the way for all manner of extremism and new crises – from pandemics to conflicts – which would threaten everyone.

    Developed countries need to continue to work with international institutions and non-governmental organisations to create sustainable strategies for helping the developing world.

    Grants and rounds of debt forgiveness are also needed. International institutions must ensure that all countries get the medical equipment and other support – including the continuation of the food programme. The progress achieved in the last decades, in reducing inequalities and alleviating poverty, must continue, so that the accomplishment of the Agenda 2030 may become a reality.

The world and its inhabitants are currently learning a painful lesson of a deeper understanding of human ties. We are all interconnected and are members of one human family. We, as ADRA, appeal for a mature and responsible global solidarity that puts people first.