In our continued effort to support and bring awareness to Amor we wondered, how is this Covid-19 Pandemic affecting Amor and their team? How is it affecting Mexico, the area they serve? We reached out to Amor and got this heartbreaking report from Amor’s Forrest Fowler on just how devastating this has been.
Forrest Fowler: The direct effects on our team during this pandemic have been pretty painful to be honest. We are looking at needing to make a nearly 50% reduction in our payroll expenses on the US side of operations and in Mexico we have had to reduce our team by nearly 30 people. This is especially tough knowing that they have less of a safety net than we have in the US when losing a job.
The following is something written by one of our team members who lives in the US but grew up in Mexico and still has many family members there.
Fellow Amor Team Member wrote: During the time that countries like Italy, Spain, and the United States were already in quarantine, the president of Mexico had announced officially that there was nothing to worry about. With that being said, the health system in Mexico was not prepared for COVID-19.
There are three types of hospitals in Mexico: private hospitals, IMSS, and Hospital General (General Hospital). IMSS is the hospital you can go to with the insurance you are given by your employer, Hospital General is the hospital anyone can go to, and the private hospitals are only for people who can afford it.
Hospital General and IMSS receive funds from the government and the private hospital can range between $10,000 to 30,000 pesos ($500 – $1600 USD) a night plus medicine. The price varies depending on how severe your case is.
Three weeks ago, the private hospitals were full, and IMSS and Hospital General did not have enough equipment to treat those with COVID-19. They are short on face masks, gloves, etc. There aren’t enough beds so the less severe cases are staying in wheelchairs for days until there is one available. The health system in Mexico is collapsing.
If you continue to work, there are almost no face masks available. There is no help from the government to those who are not working or were laid off. Those without jobs have started selling what they have at home in order to buy food.”
Until we reached out to Amor directly and asked a few questions, we didn’t realize just how severely both Mexico and their organization was being affected by this Pandemic. If you are looking for a new place to give and have been moved by their mission and story, we hope you’ll add them to your list of giving opportunities.