Back in June we launched PPE for Fisheries, a campaign to support fishers and seafood traders in Peru’s small fishing villages with the necessary protective gear and sanitation supplies to safely provide fish — a vital source of nutrition — to the Peruvian population. This project was developed in response to the crises of worker safety and food supply caused by Covid-19. Since then, we have been able to expand PPE for Fisheries from its initial connection with three villages to provide protective equipment, supporting over 7400 fishers at 8 villages up and down the coast.
Our initial fundraising drive raised around $6000US from a diverse range of donors, providing resources directly to fishers and supporting logistics to identify communities in need and coordinate delivery.
What we’ve been doing
Since then, we’ve also delivered PPE to Yacila, Paita, El Ñuro, and Los Organos, and we’re working on sourcing equipment for women seafood workers in Quilca and El Ñuro.
To date, we have supplied:
2440 reusable fabric masks
320 liters of liquid soap
140 liters of sanitizer
11 cleaning backpacks for sanitizing boat decks
10 full-body protective suits
So far, the PPE and protective gear we have supplied has reflected what fishers and local leaders told us they needed to return safely to work. Now we’re extending our support beyond the fishers themselves, to include the people that work along the supply chain. Landing sites are the next major areas we have identified for support, as they are an important gathering point (and risk area) where women, kids, and buyers all intersect as they offload, coordinate, and pick up fish. Along with PPE, landing site workers need additional resources to help with worker safety, like thermometers and plastic tubs for handwashing and boot sanitation.
Donate to PPE for Fisheries here and help us get the next delivery of equipment to fishers.
From the beginning, we knew that fisher health in the time of Covid-19 was more complex than just providing access to PPE. Along with the expanded community needs for first aid kits on boats and protective gear for workers at other nodes in the supply chain, we’ve learned more about the chronic systemic health issues that some communities are dealing with: some communities lack medical infrastructure, don’t have full-time medical staff living locally, or access to preventative care.
These are complex problems that can’t be fixed overnight. We’ve begun conversations with allies and potential partners about these issues, and are looking at ways to support wider health needs in the area. As our work in Peru continues, we’re thinking about the ways we can engage with the wider healthcare system, because we know that healthy oceans, healthy fishers, and healthy communities are deeply intertwined.
How you can help