COVID-19: What You Can Do to Help

Written by Graciella Stephanie Ganadhi, Content Writer Project Child Indonesia

What comes to your mind upon hearing “healthcare workers”? Do you instantly think of doctors and surgeons? Or do you remember those who are working hard in the frontline of current pandemic COVID-19: nurses and midwives?

Today, during World Health Day, is the day when we thank our nurses and midwives. They are hands-on in handling the pandemic while also providing us with real data and evidence concerning the pandemic. The World Health Organization even stated that without nurses, there would be no response to handle the pandemic because there will be no one that keeps a record and provides high-quality first treatment. They work tirelessly to help us all amid this pandemic and risk their lives to save those who got infected with the coronavirus.

You might be asking: well, what does all of these have to do with me? You might think that because you are healthy and have never met any nurse or midwife during this pandemic strike, then you don’t have to care or that you can’t help those who are working on the frontline other than donating money or medical supplies. However, you cannot be more wrong. There are simple things that you can do to help:

  • Wash your hands regularly! You need to keep your hands clean all the time.
  • Do not touch your face, especially your mouth, nose, and eyes. It will help you to avoid infection.
  • Wear masks! If you must go out, wear masks that cover your mouth and nose. If you have to wear a cloth mask, wash it with disinfectant after 4 hours of usage. Remember, medical N95 masks are reserved for healthcare workers! Do not wear it, you don’t need it as much as the doctors, nurses, and midwives do! 
  • Shower and disinfect your clothes after you go out!
  • Stay at home if you can. It will help with slowing the infection chain.

Showing gratitude to healthcare workers during this pandemic is simple. If you keep yourself healthy, you will lessen their workload and avoid increasing the risk of infection to them and others. So, folks, stay healthy: it is more than enough help for those in the frontline of the battle!

References:

  • https://www.who.int/news-room/campaigns/world-health-day/world-health-day-2020

COVID-19: Lesson Learned

Written by : Rizki Chairunnisa, Research Intern

According to the World Health Organization, the growing number of COVID-19 cases have reached more than 150,000 cases globally by mid-March 2020. In Indonesia, the government first announced the first cases located in Depok, West Java, on March 2, 2020. After that, the number of positive cases grew rapidly, and as per March 23, more than 500 cases were found in DKI Jakarta, West Java, Central Java, Yogyakarta, Bali, and Pontianak. Per March 23, 49 patients have been cured and 32 patients have died.  Various policies have been enacted by the central and regional governments to try and tackle the spread of COVID-19. W.H.O has sent a letter to the Indonesian president to declare this pandemic as a national disaster. The government has also instructed social distancing, online study, and work from home to reduce the spread of the virus.

This pandemic has changed many sectors and forced people to adapt in short amount of time. We should learn from our mistakes and draw lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic to be used in future crises.

1. STAY AT HOME – Public Health is Everyone’s Responsibility

Public health is everyone’s responsibility, especially in the instance of a worldwide pandemic. The first and most important thing everyone can do right now is STAY HOME! Practicing social distancing, avoid mass gatherings of more than 10 people, and shutting down non-essential businesses and practices are important steps to take. Other methods that are important to keep in mind are regularly washing hands with soap for 20 seconds, changing clothes after going outside, and avoid touching your face. By doing social distancing and self-hygiene, we prevent the further spread of the virus. Some people are misinterpreting social distancing as holiday and vacation since they are off from school or work and are using this opportunity to explore around the city. This is wrong and could make things even worse. Staying at home and isolating, limiting interactions between people, is proven to slow the spread of the virus.
It is also important to remember that while young and healthy people may feel like the virus cannot affect them as much, we need to work together to protect vulnerable populations such as elders, children, and people with underlying conditions. Also, young people and children are not immune. They are just as susceptible to being infected with the virus, and even though they are dying at a lower rate, they’re still dying. Covoid-19 is a public health issue, and we all have stake in it. We all have to take responsibility and do our parts by staying at home. 

2. Quick response

A quick response is needed to stop the spread of a pandemic. In this case, we need to learn from Singapore and Taiwan. They both quickly implemented a travel ban from mainland China, encouraged social distancing and self-isolating, and closed all non-essential businesses early on their outbreak, despite knowing the economic losses. Since the first case of the corona was found in Singapore, the government quickly implemented several policies. The government created and distributed enough Covoid-19 tests for those suffering from pneumonia or flu-like symptoms free of charge. They used contact tracing methods of suspected patients by utilizing apps or the police to test and quarantine potential Covoid-19 patients who were in contact with the original person. They strictly isolate suspected of Covid-19 patients and implement penalties for violations.

The same measures were taken in Taiwan. Since they had experience with the SARS pandemic in 2003, they were well-prepared for Covoid-19. They established a command centre for the epidemic. Since the first case was discovered on 20th of January, 2020, the government immediately implemented 124 actions such as border controls, school and work closures, public communications plans and resource assessments of hospitals. As a result, they have less than 100 cases as of mid-March.  

3. Communication is the key

Communication between the government and the public is crucial. The public needs to have trust in political leadership to have a handle on the situation for not only their physical health, but mental health as well. 

Leader’s communication skills need to deliver accurate and up to date information to the public. Leaders and the government should be honest, open, and transparent about the real conditions of their respective countries. Leaders should involve the grassroots stakeholders such as the head of household groups (RT and RW in Indonesia) to deliver the information and instructions to be understood by the local community. When the communication is clear, the public will put confidence in the government that they are taking this pandemic seriously. Also, openness and transparent information are needed to avoid the spread of rumours that cause even more unnecessary anxiety. 

4. Be wise!

During times of uncertainty, people often become anxious and scared, making rash decisions. There is a lot of information being spread about the virus through social media and the news, making it difficult to discern what is real and what is fake. But we have to do our best to remain calm and try to make the best decisions for our families and communities. By slowing down, taking a breath, and focusing on our decisions, we can make wise choices. Take time to analyse the information before making decision. The decisions should be based on a credible source of information and discussion. Take your time when making decisions. Making quick decisions may reduce your current anxiety, but they are likely to create more problems in the future.

It is easier indeed said than done. But we as an individuals, and as part of the community, can work hand in hand to help each other and government to fight the virus. We must be aware of and take action to protect each other. By doing collaboration action we can solve this crisis and eliminate the number of cases. 

Time of Crisis = Time to Care

Written by Graciella Stephanie Ganadhi, Content Writer Project Child Indonesia

The 5th of April is celebrated annually as the International Day of Conscience. First celebrated in 2019, International Day of Conscience was initiated to remind people of the importance of love and peace in our society and the importance of self-reflection and improvement. Conscience advances the well-being of people, which is an essential base of global sustainability. The advancement will enhance the development of the global economy, society, culture, spirit, technology, and education; 

Dr. Tao-Tze Hong, President of the Federation of World Peace and Love, explains that conscience works to empower people to tolerate, forgive, and love one another. It will then shorten the distance between people and nations, creating a harmonious global society that is vital for world peace. As globalization ensues, it becomes crucial for everyone to keep the world in order. As global citizens, you are encouraged to handle international and national issues with compassion, bravery, and wisdom. Keeping global peace and harmony and creating a multi-win plan that benefits people and the mother earth should be our priority.

In times of crisis, conscience becomes more important than ever. It asks you to self-reflect and reminds you to always do the right thing. It reminds you to not be selfish and put global needs first and foremost. Amid COVID-19, conscience should be the alarm inside all of us that we need to actively help to flatten the pandemic curve by staying home. For those who are still young, you have a higher chance of survival, sure. However, it should not blind you for the possibility that you can be a carrier of the disease to those who are more fragile such as the elderly or those with preexisting conditions. You shouldn’t be selfish and only think about our own needs and wants, ignoring the needs of others. You need to work together, as a global citizen, to end this pandemic. Seek your inner conscience and do the right thing: stay home, stay safe, and stay healthy!

References:

  • http://www.icday.org/index.html

Did I Finally Catch COVID-19?

Written by Graciella Stephanie Ganadhi, Content Writer Project Child Indonesia

Do you feel like you have a sore throat or increasing fever after watching or reading the news regarding COVID-19? Or your skin is suddenly itchy and your chest feels tight? You might worry that you finally have caught the disease, right? Well, no worries, fellas. Worst case scenario is yes, you might have the disease because you have come into contact with someone that has the virus or you just recently came back from travelling overseas. However, the chance of that happening is very, very, very small or none at all. There is a bigger chance that you might suffer from the psychosomatic side-effect of watching too much news.

Your brain has a part called amygdala. It is the part which controls your memory and also your fears. Due to the constant stream of worrisome news, your amygdala reacted strongly to it. Your amygdala causes the autonomous neuron system to be in constant fight or flight mechanism that causes you to stress. The imbalance between the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system then causes you to have the psychosomatic reaction which is the sudden fatigue, dry cough, sore throat, etc. that is similar to the symptoms of COVID-19.

Stress can cause you so much more harm than you might think. In a research done by André Bovis and André Simoneton in 1949, stress can cause a decrease in your body’s frequency. Everything in this universe is vibrating and has frequency, from cells to atoms. A healthy human being should have a frequency between 7000 to 8000 uB (unit Bovis). If someone has 1000 uB or less, that means the person is nearing death. A seriously ill person will have about 2000 to 3000 uB, while a moderately sick or stressed person will have under 5000 uB. Fear or worry can cause your body’s frequency to drop and if you become stressed, your frequency will be under 5000 uB. Now, why is this dangerous? As study shows, viruses have the frequency at around 5000 uB as well. This means, if your body’s frequency is also around 5000 uB, viruses might see your body as potential “home” because of the similar frequency. Thus, you will be more prone to sickness due to viruses.

So, don’t worry and stress too much about the news. “Aware not anxious, prepare not panic” should be your motto in facing this fearsome situation. Be aware of the news, but not too aware that it causes you stress. Be prepared, but don’t panic and buy everything or hoard things that others might need more than you do. Watch the news moderately. Don’t watch too much, but also don’t stop caring about the news as well. Stay in the loop, stay informed, but take time to enjoy yourself. Do things that make you happy. Watch the news for an hour then play games for another hour. Watch the news for an hour and  then do light exercise or meditation for the next hour. Portion your news-watching time in a day, it will help with the stress. Remember to stay healthy and stress-free, folks!

References:

  • http://www.lamartinablanca.com/Unidades_Bovis.html
  • https://whitemagicway.com/bovisbiometer.html
  • https://www.cnnindonesia.com/gaya-hidup/20200323131032-255-486024/cegah-corona-jadi-jadian-akibat-stres-dan-cemas-berlebih
  • https://twitter.com/mbahndi/status/1241556884261224449?s=08

Be Happy, At Home!

Written by Graciella Ganadhi, Content Writer Project Child Indonesia

It’s International Day of Happiness! Do you know that your happiness contributes to the global economy? The UN General Assembly had called for “a more inclusive, equitable and balanced approach to economic growth that promotes the happiness and well-being of all peoples.” Simply said, if people are happy then the global economy will grow too. It is more a humane approach to developing the economy than blatantly forcing people to work harder but make them suffer.

The UN has recognised happiness as a “fundamental human goal” and you should too! Here are the reasons why:

  1. Happiness boosts your health and promotes a healthy lifestyle, thus you’ll live longer!
  2. You’ll be more productive and you’ll possibly have larger income!
  3. Your happiness makes your relationships with others stronger, longer, and more fulfilling!
  4. Happiness has been proven to reduce stress and anxiety.

The theme for International Day of Happiness 2020 is “Happier Together.” As a social being, we cannot live alone, right? We receive more fulfilment if we have fun with others than by ourselves. Going out with friends and family will always be more fun than to go out by yourself.

There are a lot of ways for you to be happy. Even though doing group things are fun and fulfilling, doing things that you enjoy by yourself is fun too! Especially with the spread of COVID-19 and the fact that you should stay home, being happy by and with yourself is more important than ever. Fortunately, there are a lot of ways in which we can entertain ourselves. Watching youtube videos, scrolling through twitter and countless hours on instagram, reading books, or playing video games can be your source of happiness when you cannot and should not go out. You can rearrange your room and order decorations online if your room brings you happiness or you can try cooking your favorite food because food always brings happiness, right?. There are also lots of online classes that you can take if you want to develop yourself while having fun as well.You can and should be creative with how you spend your time while you’re home-bound. Happiness and fun come from the simplest things. So, be happy and stay happy, peeps! 

Important note: Please stay home to help stop the spread of COVID-19. Happiness can be found everywhere, even at home. If you live longer, your happiness will last longer too!

References:

  • https://www.njlifehacks.com/happiness-benefits/ (Accessed on March 18th, 2020 at 18.16)
  • https://www.dayofhappiness.net/about (Accessed on March 18th, 2020 at 18.16)

Drinking Water Program: Project Report

Written by Graciella Stephanie Ganadhi, Content Writer Project Child Indonesia

Water and sanitation have been a significant issue for Indonesians, especially for those who are living in remote areas. Most of the time, the quality of water is not safe enough for humans to drink. Survey shows that 67.1% out of 940 households have e. coli in their drinking water. It leads to many diseases, such as diarrhea.

Drinking Water Project (DWP) is created to overcome this water issue in Indonesia. DWP partnered with PT Kalbe Farma through Entrostop Anak to provide clean water for nine schools in three sub-district in Lebak, Banten. Banten has abundant diarrhea cases, and Lebak, especially, was chosen because it is falling behind from other districts in terms of economic, health, and environmental condition. The purpose of this activity is to build environmental awareness by supplying clean drinkable water in elementary schools and teaching students about the importance of sanitation and hygiene. This activity is also part of PT Kalbe Farma’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), especially in the field of health, hygiene, and prevention of diseases caused by dirty water.

PT Kalbe Farma, together with Drinking Water Project had successfully installed water filters for nine different schools in Lebak, Banten. Education for sustainable health and environment was delivered for fourth graders in all nine schools. PT Kalbe Farma and DWP also provided tumbler (drinking bottle) for all students.

References:

  • https://projectchild.ngo/blog/2018/03/20/infographic-dwp

International Women’s Day: Women’s Right is Human’s Right

Written by Graciella Stephanie Ganadhi, Content Writer Project Child Indonesia

Throughout history, women have been suffering unfair treatments from society. Mainly because they live in a patriarchal society, one that favors men. Women are treated not as their being, but rather as the property of men. They were deprived of their rights, such as the right to vote and the right to live freely. Every aspect of a woman’s life was dictated by society: from the way they dress, how they should behave, to how they should spend their life.

If you take a look back on a history book, women’s achievements were rarely celebrated. No one ever remembers Mileva Einstein, the first wife of Albert Einstein, and her brilliant help for Albert. The world only remembers Albert Einstein as the sole founder of the theory of relativity and forgets Mileva Einstein who helped him to find the equation. Society favors men so much that there is almost no trace of women’s achievements.

As time progresses, women begin to voice out their frustrations and demand equality. However, achieving gender equality is a community effort. As individuals, we have our thoughts, opinions, behaviors, and mindsets. As a community, our beliefs can have an impact on the larger society. In line with the IWD 2020 theme: Collective Individualism,  every person should take their part in the fight for gender equality. It will take each of us to change the future.

“The story of women’s struggle for equality belongs to no single feminist nor to any one organization but to the collective efforts of all who care about human rights.”

– Gloria Steinem, world-renowned feminist, journalist, and activist

It is not about a particular gender’s rights, but a human’s rights because women are humans too. As a community, we should actively go against action that opposes the celebration of women’s achievements, biased against women, and imposes stereotypes on women. We should challenge society’s outdated perspectives and broaden it.

The effort to achieve gender equality is not a one time race, it is continuous labor. An equal society will have a prosperous economy and create a more harmonious community. Remember, it is a collective effort. So, are you ready to be part of the change?

If you want to know more about International Women’s Day and what you can do, you can visit: https://www.internationalwomensday.com/

References:

  • https://www.internationalwomensday.com/Theme
  • https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/the-forgotten-life-of-einsteins-first-wife/

Sekolah Pantai Action for National Waste Awareness Day

Written by Asdinar Galuh, Sekolah Pantai Volunteer of Project Child Indonesia

National Waste Awareness Day or “Hari Peduli Sampah Nasional” was appointed at the first time in 2006 by the Indonesian Ministry of Environment and Forestry and commemorated in every 21st February. Indonesia has always been a waste emergency from year to year. This is growing concern that is capable of causing natural disasters and disease. Therefore, National Waste Awareness Day is great opportunity to take action for everyone in Indonesia. Through the small things and also realizing about how dangerous the waste is, with a real action has become the efforts to repair the damage that is happening on this earth.

It is considered more meaningful and more important than a million quotes and proverbs without an action. The words about caring for the waste will have no effect and meaning without tangible effort. Sekolah Pantai, one of the Program in Project Child Indonesia (PCI), take a real effort by joining clean-up at Pancer Door Beach in 29th February 2020. The event entitled “RISE ABOVE YOUR PLASTIC” presented by Pacitan Surf Club (PSC) that collaborated with organizations and community groups in Pacitan. PCI supported the event not only by joining the clean-up but also provides free drinking water and the organizer provides free tumbler for anyone who is thirsty during the event. They are allowed to take and to fill as much water as they wanted. A dark brown donation receptacle made of bamboo is also placed next to drinking water for the people who want to donate money to do virtue.

This event is followed by 22 kids of Sekolah Pantai, 10 parents and 14 PCI team members. The participants are not only from Sekolah Pantai, but also the people from another organization, the residents near the shore, the fishermen, even some foreign tourists. It can be seen from the faces of children who are very enthusiastic to intervene to clean the beach. They are eager to collect many kinds of rubbish and put them in white sacks. In addition, Sekolah Pantai also contributes to the campaign about the awareness and our concern keeping the environment out of the waste and to save our world from the damage. The materials for our campaign are made from rubbish and unused goods. Basically, the kids of Sekolah Pantai understand and care so much about the importance of protecting the environment. They also listen to explanations about the rubbish they had just cleaned while learning about the kinds of rubbish and how long it becomes degraded.

The presence of National Waste Awareness Day is meant to enable us to make a concerted effort to reduce waste. We should celebrate it, but it all depends on us. We don’t have to wait for a year to clean up our environment, do we? We can clean up our community every day. Because, keeping our neighborhood clean is definitely important. So, what are we waiting for? Just Do It. We all are responsible to save this world and to make it better for our future generations.

Plastic: An Indonesian Enemy

Written by Graciella Ganadhi, Content Writer Project Child Indonesia

Do you know that Indonesia is second place in terms of the world’s plastic waste producers? After China, we produce at least 25.000 tons of plastic waste every single day. All of that plastic is undeniably going to end up in rivers or coastal waters. 15 percent of plastic that pollutes the world’s oceans comes from Indonesia.

Plastic has become a modern-day Indonesian enemy. In March 2019, the soldiers of the Indonesian army had to clean up the piling plastic in Bandung’s river. The crisis is so severe that not only rivers but also beaches are also affected. Sanur Beach, Bali is one of the examples of this ever-growing pandemic. Tourists who visited the beach to enjoy the view are going to be welcomed with the smell of rotting plastic waste surrounding the area. Not only will this damage the environment, but this issue will also indefinitely damage our economy as well.

Fortunately, the Indonesian government is fighting back. However, the fight cannot be one-sided. As Indonesian citizens, we must join in on government initiatives. Understandably, our life has become more comfortable with the help of single-use plastic. However, making small changes in our life, such as reducing and reusing plastic, will help reduce our contribution to the world’s plastic invasion. If you shop, for example, start bringing your own reusable bags. If you eat out in places that use single-use plastic, bring your own utensils. Bring your own tumbler when you buy drinks, such as boba tea or coffee. It might seem too complicated and time-consuming, but imagine the impact it will bring. If you drink out of a plastic cup at least three times a week, if you start using a reusable cup, you reduce the use of plastic cups 3 times a week, which adds up to at least 156 cups per year! People say that it’s useless if only one person makes the change, but they never calculate how much a single person contributes to producing plastic waste. Now imagine if everyone starts doing so, imagine the changes that we will see as a generation.

If you reduce the use of plastic little by little each day, the turtles, jellyfishes, and octopuses on those environmental videos don’t have to suffer because of your waste.

Start small and make big changes in the future of our planet.

References:

  • https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2019/03/indonesia-has-a-plan-to-deal-with-its-plastic-waste-problem/. (Accessed on 28 February 2020 at 14.41)
  • https://www.thejakartapost.com/academia/2019/03/01/the-waste-challenge-is-indonesia-at-a-tipping-point-1551431355.html. (Accessed on 28 February 2020 at 14.41)

International Polar Bear Day: Make Small Changes and Be the Change the World Needs

Written by Graciella Ganadhi, Content Writer Project Child Indonesia

International Polar Bear Day is celebrated worldwide every February 27th. It aims to remind the citizens of the world to preserve our environment, especially the polar bear habitat. Every year, their number decreased due to climate change. Polar bears are classified as endangered or vulnerable animals because there are only 23.000 of them in all 19 places of their habitat.

The main factor that contributes to their decline is the greenhouse effect. It is when our earth is heating up due to the excess use of carbon dioxide (CO2) and the other greenhouse gases. When the planet gets hotter, the ice where they live melts, thus limiting their living space. Moreover, due to climate change, the population of seals is decreasing. The decrease causes difficulties for the polar bears to hunt for their prey.

Climate change is not only affecting polar bears and seals. It is affecting us, humans, too! Have you ever noticed that the weather has become unpredictable these past years? It rains when it’s supposed to be sunny and vice versa. It is getting colder in places that have been hot for years and hotter in places that have been cold forever/ The Arctic, the polar bears’ habitat, for example. The ice, in which the polar bears have depended for years, has begun to melt, and it is melting fast. The polar bears are not the only casualties of this phenomenon. The melting of ice causes the surface of ocean water to rise, which then resulted in the flooding or even the loss of lands because their surface is lower than the ocean.

What can we do then? The answer is simpler than you might think. As a global citizen, you can start small and be consistent. Be aware of your carbon spending and ways in which you contribute to the excess of greenhouse gases. If you can bike, walk, or ride public transportation to help lessen the production of carbon dioxide, that’s a good start. You can start to reduce, reuse, recycle your trash, and switch to reusable or renewable energy since the use of fossil fuel is also a big contributing factor to climate change.

It is not too late to start taking action. As people often say, it’s better to be late than never starting. Reduce the use of single-use plastic, reduce the frequency of your carbon production, and change into renewable energy. Make small changes in your life and be the change that the world needs.

References:

  • https://polarbearsinternational.org/about-us/. Accessed on Feb 21 at 15.30.
  • https://www.goingzerowaste.com/blog/5-ways-to-reduce-your-carbon-footprint . Accessed on Feb 21 at 15.30.