WiRED International staff writers Olivia and Meghan Spirito sat down with their parents, Christopher and Jennifer, during a family dinner to discuss how COVID-19 is affecting their lives and to share their thoughts on volunteering for WiRED. The sisters came up with questions before dinner to ask each other and their parents. They recorded their answers during the dinner and then wrote the conversation down for this article.
Myths about COVID-19 continue to circulate around the Internet. Misinformation ranges from the laughable (the virus arrived from outer space!) to the dangerous (hydroxychloroquine or bleach cure the virus). Conspiracy theories suggest that Greta Thunberg caused COVID-19 to help with climate change or that hand sanitizer companies invented the virus as a marketing scheme.
The spread of the COVID-19 pandemic to Kisumu, Kenya, is placing a heavy burden on a population already suffering routinely from disease and lack of basic health care. If that weren’t enough, since early 2020, East Africa has experienced unprecedented waves of locust swarms — a crisis linked to climate change — which has destroyed livestock and crops and threatens to worsen food scarcity.
The New York Times reports that while the COVID-19 pandemic is lessening in many of the countries hit early in 2020, new hot spots in Latin America, Asia and the Middle East are causing a record rise in the number of first-time cases of the virus.
Despite early action by the Peruvian government, COVID-19 continues to devastate the nation. Once in Lima, the virus rapidly spread to the city of Iquitos and from that gateway to remote villages along the Amazon, an area where WiRED’s partner, Project Amazonas (PA), provides medical services. Working with PA, WiRED provides health education and other IT resources, including an electronic patient record system that runs entirely off the grid; patient data collected in remote regions can be uploaded to country-level data programs for aggregation and analysis.
The COVID-19 pandemic has turned our lives upside down. People are isolated at home with time on their hands. Anxiety levels are high.
One way to cope is to adopt or to foster an animal. Shelters and rescue organizations report record numbers of applications, and some places are empty of animals for the first time ever.
COVID-19, climate change, neglected tropical diseases, recently released health education modules and videos on our work, a new smartphone app — these are all topics of recent stories posted on WiRED International’s website.
GivingTuesday, a global generosity movement, is launching a special day of unity to take place on May 5, to address urgent needs caused by COVID-19. People are encouraged to donate to organizations dealing with the severe impact of the virus.
Due to dramatic advances in transportation, a viral outbreak that began halfway around the world now assaults our entire country. It is sickening and killing even people in small towns like Odon, Indiana. That’s where my 91-year-old brother is confined to a small room in an assisted living facility. He’s recuperating from hip surgery and isolated to hopefully avoid contracting the deadly virus.
It’s World Immunization Week. Yet, the World Health Organization (WHO) reports that even before COVID-19 emerged, millions of people — particularly children- across the globe were left unprotected against preventable diseases. Today, the turmoil stirred by the coronavirus pandemic is creating a health crisis more catastrophic than COVID-19 itself.