South-South Solidarity for COVID-19 Responses: Shenzhen-based NGO Donates 20,000 Masks to West Africa

6 August, New York – Facilitated by the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC), the Shenzhen Federation of Youth Entrepreneurship Promotion pledged a donation of 20,000 disposable surgical masks to the Banjul City of The Gambia and the West African Health Organization (WAHO) upon their requests. UNOSSC Cities Project team in Beijing coordinated the logistics with support from the UNDP China Country Office.

According to the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, as of 28 July, 859,237 confirmed cases and 18,160 deaths have been reported in the continent, among which 122,043 cases and 1,853 deaths were found in West Africa, a region already grappling with conflict and food insecurity prior to the outbreak.

Earlier this year, Cities Project partner, the City Council of Banjul and WAHO asked UNOSSC for support in purchasing medical equipment and PPEs for its 15 Member States through the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).

10,000 masks donated by the Federation reached a warehouse in Beijing to be handed over to WAHO. Source of image: UNOSSC

Banjul receiving 10,000 masks donated by the Shenzhen Federation in the Mayor’s office. Source of image: Banjul City Council

The government of The Gambia declared a state of public emergency on 27 March for 21 days to curb the spread of COVID-19 and the Parliament approved a 45-day extension on 3 April. However, the curve has not yet been flattened as the number of confirmed cases continues to increase.

With the rising spread of COVID-19 worldwide, the Cities Project team continued to circulate all requests for support within its’ networks and with various partners. Soon after, the Shenzhen Federation of Youth Entrepreneurship Promotion pledged donations of 10,000 surgical masks each to WAHO and Banjul.

Mr. Daixing Chen, Chairman of the Shenzhen Federation of Youth Entrepreneurship Promotion, shared that they had been closely following the pandemic’s evolving situation and proactively mobilized needed resources among partners to support global COVID-19 responses. “We firmly support Africa’s COVID-19 response efforts and carry forward China-Africa cooperation and friendship,” said Mr. Chen.

Mrs. Rohey Malick Rowe, Lord Mayor of Banjul, expressed her appreciation for the swift support and accentuated the importance of South-South solidarity in responding to COVID-19. “Together we can fight against this common threat,” said Mrs. Lowe.

10,000 masks for Banjul packed and ready to be dispatched from the Federation’s office in Shenzhen. Source of image: Shenzhen Federation of Youth Entrepreneurship Promotion

The Shenzhen Federation of Youth Entrepreneurship Promotion is a non-government organization based in Shenzhen City of China. Under the Youth4South Programme, UNOSSC and the Federation jointly organized a series of capacity building events for youth of the global South, including the “Building Capacity in Entrepreneurship and Leadership for Youth and Women Empowerment” workshop in Madagascar from 3 to 5 in November 2019, ahead of the 11th African Private Sector Forum, and the “Youth Innovation and Sustainable Development” Conference in Shenzhen, China from 13 to 16 in November 2019. Similar activities for partners in the West Africa region have been planned for 2020 jointly by UNOSSC and the Federation.

To find out more, please vist UNOSSC Cities Project and Youth4South.