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Brazil Ex-Prisoners Distribute Aid to Poor Amid COVID Lockdown

A woman wearing a protective face mask carries food donated by “Eu sou Eu” or “I am me,” a non-profit run by former inmates, during the coronavirus pandemic, at the Para-Pedro favela in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, May 8, 2020.

A Brazilian non-governmental organization run by a group of ex-prisoners is providing aid to residents of Rio de Janeiro's poor neighborhoods (favelas) as the country is facing an economic crisis partially caused by coronavirus restrictions.

Eu Sou Eu, or I Am Me, is distributing food and face masks to the needy in the favelas, where many people live under the poverty line, lacking adequate food and decent living spaces.

Authorities in Brazil have enforced strict guidelines to curb the spread of COVID-19 with stay-at-home orders and requiring people to wear masks in public places and on transportation.

However, President Jair Bolsonaro has pushed to have measures eased and has criticized governors for going too far with restrictions.

Data collected by the Johns Hopkins University show that Brazil has more than 146,800 confirmed COVID-19 cases and more than 10,000 deaths.