VZF response to COVID-19

Global level

As part of a sector-wide initiative the VZF will protect garment workers affected by COVID-19 providing personal protective equipment (PPE), deliver awareness raising campaigns on OSH and provide policy advice on OSH, with the aim of building peoples’ resilience to future shocks. This approach will meet immediate humanitarian needs and building longer term, sustainable solutions that are part of national policy frameworks. VZF collaborates with Better Work to deliver support to workers, especially women in Bangladesh, Cambodia, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Madagascar and Vietnam. The measures are part of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) global Emergency COVID-19 Support Programme."

In close collaboration with ILO’s SCORE programme, the VZF Secretariat and the LABADMIN/OSH Branch developed a training module on “Prevention and mitigation of COVID-19 at Work for Small and Medium Enterprises”. The module, which includes a COVID-19 Action checklist for SMEs, will be used to deliver training courses in VZF countries and beyond.
Country level

As part of the 2020 Safe Day, VZF Myanmar launched an effective social media campaign on COVID-19. VZF worked in close collaboration with the Myanmar Government, trade unions and workers organizations to produce information material on COVID-19. At the time of writing, the campaign page has more than 32,000 followers. In addition, VZF Myanmar supported the development of an animated COVID-19 prevention music video for workers and employers. The video, which featured the popular Myanmar artist, Mi Sandi, reached more than 750,000 users on the above mentioned campaign page. In addition, the “Myanmar Times”, the most circulated newspaper in Myanmar, featured the efforts of the Vision Zero Fund to respond to the pandemic.
Covid-19 prevention in Myanmar

In Mexico, a COVID-19 prevention and mitigation guide for the agricultural sector was developed and disseminated both nationally and internationally in both Spanish and English. The guide was adopted as an official document by the Government of Mexico and was distributed by the Secretary of Agriculture to all the actors in the agriculture supply chain in Mexico. The guide is accompanied by four videos and four radio spots to ensure that the messages reach workers in the field and received broad media coverage.

In consultation with partners and in line with the priorities of the National Covid Task Force Committee for Lao PDR and the joint UN Covid Emergency Response Plan, the VZF project has implemented  several COVID-19 related activities in Champasak province, where the project is active in the coffee value chain. For example, it has developed a training on disinfection and cleaning of non-health settings for workers and employers. 

The Vision Zero Fund and the coordinated Programme in the Ethiopia apparel and textile sector, SIRAYE, is playing an active role in ensuring the safety of individuals and the sustainability of businesses. As such, the programme, conducted interview with workers and factory managers  to share and collect key information on COVID-19 and its related effects.The project is continuously assessing the response of factories to the pandemic; evaluating the measures that factories are putting in place to prevent worker’s exposure to the virus; and collaborating with the Industrial Parks Development Corporation (IPDC) and Investors Association on a variety of initiatives aimed at implementing COVID-19 prevention measures in the Industrial Parks.