“As the COVID-19 pandemic and the consequences of national containment continue to affect people, Caritas continues to work hard and fight daily to help the poorest Mauritian families cope with this global threat,” Caritas Mauritius leadership says in the statement.
Explaining how the Catholic Church entity received the fund from the NCF, Ms. Koenig says, “On 11 May 2020, Caritas Mauritius responded to the call for projects from the National Covid Fund (NCF) by submitting a vast Food Aid Program, a project supported by the association's large network of volunteers and social workers deployed in 52 Caritas points/centres on the island, to reach the main pockets of poverty.”
In the statement, the President of Caritas Mauritius expresses gratitude to the NCF for approving and funding the Food Aid Program.
“The funds obtained are a great help to continue the difficult and often complicated work we started last year with the most disadvantaged people with much lesser means,” Ms. Koenig says.
She adds that similar to other Caritas projects, the ongoing food distribution “is done within the framework of eligibility criteria and broader social support to help families get back on their feet.”
The Caritas official further explains that the ongoing Food Aid Program comprises two components, “a direct food aid project, through the distribution of Food Packs/Vouchers during the confinement and school meals to children (and) an agricultural development project to help families meet their own needs (community vegetable gardens).”
“The program is on track,” Ms. Koenig says, adding that “as of 31 March 2021, 4,766 food packs distributed by Caritas have been funded by the National Covid Fund (NCF).”
As a way of improving transparency and good governance, the President of the board members of Caritas Mauritius says that the leadership of the Catholic Church entity submitted a report to the authorities and an audit by the NCF is underway.
Ms. Koenig adds that because of NFC’s funding, which has catered for the food aid, “Caritas has decided not to appeal for food donations.”
Caritas Mauritius is however open to receiving donations for the hygienic needs of infants and elderly members of the Mauritian society which are not provided for by the NCF funds, she clarifies in the April 20 statement.