Radio stations in Tamale have been targeted in WUZDA Ghana’s latest donation drive of handwashing facilities in order to enhance society’s quest to fighting the novel Coronavirus disease.
The organization was founded on the principles of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) and therefore puts all issues WASH at the core of all its activities.
The Coronavirus as WUZDA Ghana understands, is killed when the hands are washed properly with soap under running water, if the hand touches a surfaces that is contaminated with it. This is why the donation of handwashing facilities has become extremely necessary in these times.
Key radio stations in Ghana’s northern regional capital were identified also as platforms for some information dissemination regarding what the public should know and how to properly observe the various safety protocols as directed by the government as part of the COVID-19 fight.
WUZDA Ghana’s Programmes and Communication teams took turns on radio stations such as Justice FM, Radio Tawasul, Bishara Radio, Diamond FM and others to educate the public on the need to observe especially the proper handwashing protocol, as a major way to curb the spread of the virus from person to person.
Other protocols announced by the government for adherence were the use of hand sanitizers, avoiding handshakes and public gatherings, keeping a distance of at least 2 meters if in a public place, which WUZDA Ghana contributed to elaborating for people to understand what they mean and why it has become necessary for them to be observed if one has to stay alive.
The team took turns on the various stations from Monday 20th March, 2020, also to explain in basic terms to the public, what the looming lockdown means, as well as its intricacies, as other nations had resorted to it, as one of the best ways to limit the movement of the virus.
Programme Manager for WUZDA Ghana, Ziblim Abdul Karim noted that since the inception of the organization as an NGO, it can pride itself of being at the very center of all activities of the state in the area of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene.
Mr. Karim said WUZDA Ghana’s membership with the Coalition of NGOs in the Water and Sanitation sector (CONIWAS), speaks to the contribution the organization has made in this area.
On the issue of a lockdown and whether it should take a partial or a total form in the case of Ghana, the Programme Manager said some of the major problems the rural communities face have to do with lack of access to water and latrines.
According to him, it is a known reality that most of the rural folk depend on dams and dugouts as their sources of water, as well as public or community shared latrines, where a whole house would in most cases have to walk a distance of about a mile to access these basic amenities.
In his view, a total lockdown would not be appropriate in the context of Ghana because of the kinds of communities, coupled with the ways of life of the people.
He however charged the government to get down to the communities and interact with their members from time to time to know exactly what their problems are, instead of dumping on them developmental projects they think touch on the need of the communities.
Ibrahim Abdul Ganiyu, who is the Northern Zonal Coordinator for CONIWAS and Training Coordinator at WUZDA Ghana indicated that many are those in the rural communities who lack the basic knowledge on the need for proper handwashing, which is why it became necessary for especially the information dissemination campaign to be launched.
He encouraged the radio stations which are recipients of the facilities to monitor for them to be put to good use and be maintained appropriately.
WUZDA Ghana currently has over 1,000 direct and indirect beneficiaries to two of its major projects, the Farm-Promoting Urban Organic Waste for Food and Livelihood Security and After 24 Years Before Marriage.
The organization is discussing with its partners on possible supports for these beneficiaries should there be a lockdown.
In the meantime, plans are far advanced to reach out to these beneficiaries with daily real time audio information on their mobile phones regarding the safety measures to be observed.