DAPP Zimbabwe has launched the Danish Emergency Relief Fund (DERF) supported Early Actions program. The Early Actions aim to contribute towards containing the spread of the COVID-19 epidemic and decrease morbidity and mortality among vulnerable people in Makoni District in Manicaland province in Zimbabwe. The project aims to reach 10 000 households at risk of contracting COVID-19 with correct facts about the epidemic and how they can protect themselves and each other .
Presenting the project at district sensitization meetings, Project Leader, Stailine Ruzvidzo said the main thrust of the project is to ensure that communities and people know how to prevent getting infected by COVID-19 and how not to spread the virus to others. This will be done through targeted information dissemination channels, outreach activities, screening and support for those affected. The intervention which is aligned with the Zimbabwe’s Humanitarian Response Plan (ZHRP) will work closely with the District Response Team and Ministry of Health and Child Care to identify those at risk and provide them with basic food assistance, COVID-19 screening as well as establish social support structures to stop the spread of COVID-19.
As part of measures to support vulnerable members of the community DAPP will establish water points to ensure that there is availability of clean water to maintain good hygiene. Community members will also receive skills training on how to establish and maintain vegetable gardens to ensure sustainability of food supplies. DAPP through this project will work closely with Rusape General Hospital to strengthen the established Isolation centre in the district, provide personal protective equipment for health care workers and donate a multi-purpose ambulance for patients and reaching hard to reach areas.
DAPP Zimbabwe in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and Child Care (Shamva Hospital) organized a COVID-19 awareness campaign in Shamva district targeting communities around Madziwa Rural, Cornerstore, Joking 8 and Wadzanai township. The campaign was conducted earlier this month
As the nation fights the COVID-19 pandemic DAPP Zimbabwe has taken public health and hygiene messages to the most vulnerable people using road shows. The campaign reached more than 5 000 people in semi-urban, mining areas and rural areas.
The initiative has enabled the dissemination of key messages on COVID-19 in one of the most effective and efficient ways particularly during the lock down period. There is good uptake of messages and information as the roadshow team moved through communities spreading messages using loud speakers.
The key messages emphasized COVID-19 transmission, prevention, hygiene, social distancing and other important health and well-being issues related to COVID-19.
The District Environmental Technician for Shamva District Mr Evidence Mufambi spoke highly on the collaboration between DAPP and the Ministry of Health and Child Care adding that it was critical for marginalized communities to have access to information on COVID-19 to stop its spread.
He added that proper hand-washing and correct use of face mask demonstrations were going a long way in ensuring that communities are protected.The campaign demonstrated the need for continuous organizing and supporting the community with relevant information about COVID-19.
As the world continues the fight against COVID -19, the gains made in fighting HIV/AIDS must be maintained. Following the extension of the nationwide lockdown in Zimbabwe, HOPE Bindura’s voluntary counseling and testing (VCT) centre resumed offering HIV counseling and testing to the Bindura community in May 2020.
HOPE Project Leader Rebecca Njopera says providing HIV health services such as HIV prevention, testing and treatment remains a priority during the level 2 lockdown period in order to reach the 95-95-95 targets. “As we resume the services, we continue to adhere to laid down precautionary measures of social distancing, and hand washingt among others. The nurse and staff manning the testing centre worked together to ensure that both clients and the staff are safe.
New measures implemented to protect clients and staff:
- Both clients and staff are screened for COVID-19 symptoms before entering the clinic
- Both clients and staff wear face masks in the centre
- Water and Soap and hand sanitizer are provided for both staff and clients
- Staff advises clients on safe physical distancing.