In Tanzania, the Foundation for Civil Society has been leading the country’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic in many ways, including reallocating funds, spearheading further fundraising, and organising campaigns to provide protective equipment to healthcare workers.
According to the African Philanthropy Network (APN), FCS ‘has been at the forefront of ensuring civil society organisations in Tanzania are playing their much-needed role of not only raising awareness, but also providing the necessary material support needed to keep marginalised and vulnerable populations safe from the pandemic.
So far, FCS’s efforts have involved making available TZS 1.5 billion (approx. USD $650,000) for COVID-19 interventions by reallocating 20 per cent of grantee 2020 project budgets. The reallocated funds are supporting different vulnerable and marginalised groups, including those with disabilities, women, children, elderly, pastoralists, hunter-gather communities, and small-business entrepreneurs.
The Foundation for Civil Society has also partnered with different CSOs in Tanzania to raise funds for COVID relief, so far contributing TZS 79 million (approx. USD $34,000) to the National Relief Fund. FCS also ran a campaign to support raising funds for personal protective equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers, the proceeds of which were donated to the Medical Association of Tanzania.
Though officially Tanzania has not reported a new COVID-19 case in almost three months, many worry a lack of transparency is masking a critical problem, especially as the African continent surpasses one million reported Coronavirus cases this week. In this context, the work of FCS becomes yet more critical.
‘Throughout these challenging times, if there is one thing that has stood out, it is the role of partnerships in protecting the wellness of both the people, and the economies that they depend on to thrive,’ wrote the African Philanthropy Network about the Foundation for Civil Society.