What is the COVID-19 pandemic?

Since emerging in China in December 2019, the COVID-19 virus has spread throughout the world including Europe, America and Africa – where cases have been rising daily and many people have sadly died.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) officially declared the COVID-19 outbreak as a pandemic on 11 March 2020. Apart from being a health crisis, the disease has also caused businesses to shut and many people to lose jobs and income – creating unprecedented economic and social pressure.

If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms while in Ethiopia, you can call the Ethiopian COVID-19 helplines on 8335 or 952 for advice.

WaterAid Ethiopia’s response to COVID-19

We are supporting the efforts of the government in the fight against COVID-19. The response has mainly focused on preventative measures, aimed at stopping the fast spread of the disease in the country.

We are collaborating with stakeholders including the Ministry of Health, Ethiopian Public Health Institute, Healthcare facilities across the country and other partners to support the Government’s response to COVID-19.

Here are the steps we've taken so far:

Equipment and supplies

Provided equipment and supplies to support good hygiene practices, especially hand washing, in public places and hospitals. This includes hands-free handwashing stations, soap and sanitiser, disinfectant and personal protective equipment.

Media coverage

Intensified sensitisation on COVID-19 and hygiene behaviour change through social media platforms, public address system, posters, leaflets, including extensive coverage of the activities in the local media.

Our work in action

In response to COVID-19 in Ethiopia, WaterAid has distributed water tanks, alcohol sanitiser and soap to health centres and temporary COVID-19 treatment sites in the capital city Addis Ababa. WaterAid has also developed promotional materials in local languages, designed to inform, educate and communicate messages around key hygiene behaviours. These also serve as reminders in the communities where we work to promote and encourage handwashing with soap and water.