Taking care and comfort during the COVID 19 pandemic

9 Jul 2020 - 11:45

COVID 19 Pandemic has dramatically altered all our lives. At UCT, we have been away from campus since mid-March 2020, and it is now more than 3 months since we have last experienced ‘normal’ campus life. COVID-19 pandemic impacts all our lives and livelihoods, both similarly and differently. We all have to experience lockdown, and as a country or region the infection and transmission rates affects all of us. In South Africa and in the Western Cape (in particular) we are told that we are peaking and reaching a plateau and that this might continue for a while still, into August and possibly September and nationally, the number of COVID cases has just crossed 200 000. We now know that this virus is real, and we all know somebody who has tested COVID-19 positive or/and who has passed on – this virus is close – and we have seen and felt the effects.

We know that families, households and communities will be impacted differently. The different stages of lockdown have taught us (again) that we are not equal. We still live in a vastly unequal society. Food and housing in/securities have demonstrated that at the very basic level of staying alive, we are different. Some of us have enough to eat and others don’t. Some of us are safe and some of us are further exposed to violence. Some of us have increased care responsibilities and some of us don’t. Some of us work comfortably from home – we have that option and choice, yet so many don’t. And the fault lines persist and are further exposed in this pandemic. The need for urgent redress of economic and social inequalities remain. We have been tested and will continue to be tested – let’s continue to collectively protect our health and safety and ensure that everybody we know has food on their tables.

To all GC students and partners, we see you and we would like to express our appreciation, and support for the continued contributions in easing the pressures of lockdown in multiple ways (whether in communities or not) and furthering the call for a just society. At GCP we remain committed to addressing social inequalities through our teaching and learning practice and strive to build stronger connections and solidarities with communities, both locally and globally.

Continue to take care of yourself and loved ones during this time.

Benita Moolman

GC Programme Manager