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The #COVID19 Lagos Emergency Food Response is an initiative by the governor of Lagos, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu announced on the 27th of March, 2020 to help the most vulnerable population in the state during the #StayAtHome directive aimed at stopping the spread of #COVID19.

This is one of the many initiatives by the state government to help residents during this period.

The strategy for distribution of the packages is through the 4,000 registered Community Development Association (CDAs), Non-Governmental Organisations and Religious bodies in each locality.

During the first phase, SMSes were sent directly to the phones of the targeted population using the Lagos State Resident Registration Agency (LASRRA).

The first phase had over 100 trucks utilizing the services of the youth and women to prepare the packages. The team successfully reached over 100,000 households and the packs contained rice, beans, garri, bread and other means of sustenance.

The second stage as announced by The State Commissioner for Agriculture, Prince Gbolahan Lawal is targeted at people living with disabilities, the elderly who had earlier received SMS from the Lagos State Resident Registration Agency (LASRRA), and vulnerable people within certain catchment communities and in the informal sector.

Lessons were learned from the first stage of distribution so the system has now been reformed with a better \strategy and approach.

The state government has acted as a catalyst that has led to many other similar initiatives from other sectors targeted at different demographics.

The packages from the state are not for everybody, they are targeted at households of the aged, the indigent and the most vulnerable in the society. It is just a relief and not a substitute for loss of income.

The government is not punishing people by asking them to stay at home but staying at home is a necessity. It is in our long-term interest to be able to live and keep hope alive. The whole world is on lockdown.

The new phase will be aided by the Civil Society Organisations, Volunteer Group and personalities, artists, Non-Governmental Organizations, men of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) and the Neighbourhood Safety Corps all providing their expertise helping to improve distribution and security.

#COVID19 came as a shock to everyone; it was unprecedented and no Government had a budget for the huge expenses that came with the pandemic, which includes this palliatives project. The expenses on this project are extra-budgetary but the government is doing all it can to help stop the spread.

Please continue to stay at home and practice social distancing. Together, we will beat #COVID19.


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