A message from Hand in Hand International Chair Bruce Grant

20 Mar 2020

In times of crisis, the vulnerable suffer most.

For now, it is the physically vulnerable who need our care and attention. But let’s not forget that one day in the not-too-distant future, it will be the economically vulnerable whose voices cry out loudest. Just as fighting the spread of Covid-19 requires every one of us to do our part today, so too will helping the world’s poorest people bounce back from the collapse of global markets require total, concerted resolve tomorrow.

As Chair of Hand in Hand International, let me be unequivocal: our global network will be ready to lead the fight. Even as programmes in some parts of the network have been forced to press pause, others are being modified to spread crucial virus prevention guidelines to some of the hardest-to-reach corners of the world. Behind the scenes, work on digitising our fieldwork and building new programmes that raise incomes even higher continues apace.

As Executive Chairman of the Applied Value Group and someone with decades of business experience, I would add that, even now, the philanthropic community must remember our incredible privilege and duty to pay it forward. Now is an exceptionally difficult time for everyone, but it’s also a time to reflect on the things that truly matter to us: family, friends and helping the most vulnerable. Let’s use this opportunity to make the world a better place – something Applied Value is doing by committing to increase our CSR pledges this year despite a forecasted drop in profitability.

To Hand in Hand’s donors and partners, we say thank you for continued support. Our team will have already reached out to you individually, and you’ll be hearing much more from us in the coming days and weeks. To our field staff in Afghanistan, East Africa and India we say thank you for working so hard through such incredible adversity. And to our members in every corner of our network, we say this: no matter where you are, no matter what it takes, we promise to help get you back on your feet – and after that, up the ladder.

Yesterday, as coronavirus deaths in my home country the United States surpassed 100, lawmakers announced $1 trillion in spending to help see Americans through. Imagine a world where we could find instant bilateral support for spending the same on micro-entrepreneurship, drilling for clean water and fighting malaria in the developing world.

Wishing you and yours health, safety and calm,

Bruce Grant
Chair, Hand in Hand International
Executive Chairman, Applied Value Group