Italy - International cooperation, scientific research and companies together to contrast spread of Covid-19 in countries of southern hemisphere

21 July 2020

(ANS - Rome) - The world of international cooperation joins the world of scientific research and private companies to contain the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic in over 100 countries in the southern hemisphere across Africa, Latin America and Asia.

The Salesian NGO VIS (Volontariato Internazionale per lo Sviluppo - International Volunteer for Development), Avsi Foundation, Cuamm Doctors with Africa, and the Politecnico University of Milan have started a new collaboration for the creation of information campaigns and the self-production of personal protective equipment with materials available on site and at low cost. Thanks to researchers from the Milan-based university, the 3 NGOs will disseminate tutorials and technical datasheets for the construction of protective devices in rural and periurban contexts in the countries where they are present to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The health emergency in developing countries needs support above all to strengthen the response and resilience capacities of and in the most critical contexts and the poorest sections of the population, where the health emergency is grafted into already especially critical economic and social conditions.

This has prompted different subjects such as AVSI, Cuamm, and VIS with the Politecnico of Milan and ENI (Italian energy company) to start a new collaboration along three main lines: rapid response to the emergency, slowing down the spread, promoting resilience. The collaboration starts from the diffusion of tutorials and technical data sheets in different languages, prepared by the Politecnico di Milano, the technical partner, which will be made available to local subjects (cooperatives, small businesses, vocational training schools, hospitals) to contain the spread of the virus.

At this link you can download the datasheets and access the videos.

The strategies identified provide instructions and operating methods for:

• autonomous construction and local distribution of devices aimed at mitigating the infection;

• production and local distribution of easy-to-produce sanitizing solutions or gels in on-site facilities;

• independent construction and local distribution of protective visors for staff in contact with the public;

• training activities, with a focus on healthcare and auxiliary staff;

• awareness campaigns aimed at the adoption of prevention measures for the reduction of the infection;

• assistance and food safety interventions.

Each of the actors involved, in addition to having specific experiences and skills, is included in networks that could prove useful both at a technical level and at the level of presence and knowledge of the areas of intervention (NGO Networks - FOCSIV, AOI, LINK 2007, University Coordination Cooperation and Development, CRUI).

ENI is also involved in the partnership. The Covid-19 emergency response plan formulated by ENI, in fact, provides that some of the interventions already envisaged in terms of social support, water sanitization, health prevention and education, may also be implemented through collaboration with one or more partners, with which Eni already collaborates.

This partnership, which is open and available as per country system, represents a concrete case of enhancing a multi-actor approach and interconnection between global needs and local skills.


ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

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