As a humanitarian organization dedicated to providing the most fragile communities across the globe with the infrastructure they need to survive and thrive, our work must go on. COVID-19 underscores the importance of sound infrastructure in times of crisis.
“Now isn’t the time to stop. Now is the time to innovate! And, with over 9,500 highly-skilled volunteers you can bet we have a great deal of expertise to contribute.”
— Cathy Leslie, Chief Executive Officer, Engineers Without Borders USA
Our COVID-19 Plan
- First, we’re protecting the important gains we’ve made across the globe while simultaneously making sure we are not putting others in harm’s way. With our travel temporarily suspended, we are drawing on the expertise of our country offices and focusing our efforts on planning, designing, and finding new ways to collaborate with our on-the-ground partners and contractors remotely, ensuring that our projects can move forward and our commitments to our partners are met. Our teams in the U.S. are doubling down on their projects, planning and preparing so we can hit the ground running when the time is right.
- Second, we’re sharing our expertise and connecting our volunteers with people and projects on the front line, responding to current needs and anticipating future needs.
In Guatemala, where the virus has not yet spread extensively, our staff is working with five of our partner hospitals to prepare them for an anticipated wave of cases. Our work includes adding capacity to the water supply by replacing well pumps, providing additional toilets and handwashing stations, and renovating and reconfiguring facilities to ensure patient and health practitioner safety.
In the U.S., we are also contributing expertise to a team Biomedical Engineers out of the Grainger Engineering Design Innovation Lab at UW-Madison in developing open-source personal protective equipment (PPE) and ventilators in response to the urgent need for healthcare workers.
- Third, we are having staff work remotely and are providing the resources necessary for them to do so. We are committed to doing our part to flatten the curve so resources can be directed toward the people who need them most. And, we’re committed to coming through this storm as a stronger organization.
We’re not stopping our work, we’re innovating and adapting.
While the landscape changes by the hour, we remain committed to continuing our work delivering the essentials to the world’s most vulnerable people. We’ve been on the frontlines before. We’re engineers and finding solutions is what we do. Join us.
Be sure to check back here for more news around our Coronavirus response.