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President of Brazil tests positive for COVID-19 as cases soar

By July 13, 2020

Brazil (MNN) — As cases spike in Brazil, Compassion International works with the Church to provide food and protective equipment to those in need.

Brazil has become an epicenter of COVID-19, even as the country proceeds with its reopening. President Jair Bolsonaro, who has been vocally dismissive of the virus, has tested positive.

But poverty in Brazil is making the crisis even worse. Vanessa Viotti of Compassion International says, “When this kind of situation happens in poor communities and poor cities, it [gets worse] dramatically because they don’t have any research or support to face this.”

Most people in Brazil work every day to earn food money for that day. Lockdowns severely disrupt this system, making the cycle of poverty even worse.

This is where the Church steps in. Viotti says, “During this season, their families don’t have basic food. So the sponsorship in this season is even more key because, with the sponsorship support, the Church is able to provide food for these kids and their families.”

What Compassion International is doing

Domestic abuse cases have skyrocketed around the world as lockdowns have been installed. Compassion International has a hotline that kids can call if they need help.

In addition, the ministry usually hosts a parade to bring awareness to sexual abuse. That can’t happen this year, but it has been replaced with an online competition in which children participate through music, theater, or art. Compassion International has also used this campaign to bring awareness to their hotline.

So far, Compassion International has distributed over 250,000 kits of food and 150,000 hygienic items to these families. The ministry also works with local hospitals, providing them with 200,000 pieces of protective equipment.

And you can be a part of this ministry, Viotti says. “In Brazil, we have almost 7000 kids without a sponsor. So, through sponsorship, you can be part of this big movement of COVID-19 response in the world.”

Aside from aid, the churches in Brazil have been very creative during the pandemic and lockdowns. “They are using WhatsApp, YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, and Zoom. They continue to serve the kids and the families, preaching the Gospel and supporting them in that emotional way.”

Pray that COVID-19 would recede from Brazil soon. Thank God that the Church is working, and pray that many would be drawn to Christ as a result.

 

 

The header image shows Rio De Janeiro in Brazil. (Image by Nuno Lopes from Pixabay)

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