The Adventist Disaster Relief Agency Samoa is working in partnership with the New Zealand High Commission to help feed more than 600 workers who are working at the Motootua Hospital during the measles epidemic.
Country Director of ADRA, Su’a Julia Wallwork said they have responded to the request from the Ministry of Health in providing food for the health workers.
“At first we were already playing a part during this time for our community,” she said.
“As you know this is not like other disasters, so we looked at where the need was and we found that it was in the lines of people waiting to be vaccinated,” she said.
“So we decided that we will supply purified drinking water and dry snacks and that’s what we’ve been doing.
“We have teams who have been going to different vaccinated sites and hand over those for the people.
“We started on Monday and we will keep doing that until the vaccination is completed.”
Su’a went on to say the partnership with the New Zealand High Commission came during the Disaster Advisory Committee meeting on Monday.
“They heard that we are playing a huge part in this and so they asked if we could work in partnership to help the health workers.
“And also it was during that meeting that we found out, that there is a big need from the Ministry of Health to feed the health workers.
“So the NZ High Commission is funding this while ADRA provides the food for all the health workers, everyone who is working there from the driver to the police officers who are on duty and everyone.”
Asked if this include breakfast, lunch and dinner Su’a said it is only during lunch time.
“If we had the money we would have done it,” she said.
“However, we don’t, even supplying water and dried snacks for the people we had to work within our budget but this is something we have to do, so if we had the money to provide for all three meals of the day we would have done it.
“But we have decided that there will be different menus every day, we don’t want to serve them with the same menu every day.
“So the project started on Thursday and we were able to provide 715 food for all the workers.”
Asked if this will include the hospital in the rural areas Su’a said they have asked and the workers there said the villages are looking after them by providing food and necessary needs.“They are being looked after by the villagers,” she said.
“But we have thought about that and the workers there are well looked after so we focused only on the workers at Motootua because many people are going to there to be vaccinated even to see a doctor.
“So we will be providing food for them every day including Saturdays and Sundays until the state of emergency is lifted.”