30 seconds read: WaterAid Ghana, a non-governmental organization has partnered the Mastercard Foundation to implement a project aimed at ensuring that markets in three Municipalities of the country are safe to both traders and buyers.
WaterAid Ghana, a non-governmental organization has partnered the Mastercard Foundation to implement a project aimed at ensuring that markets in three Municipal Assemblies are safe to both traders and patrons.
This will be achieved through a structured hygiene and behaviour change campaign on the five core WHO/GHS hygiene behaviours namely Handwashing with soap under running water; Respiratory hygiene; maintaining physical distancing; Cleanliness of surfaces frequently touched and Referral/Self-isolation in the beneficiary Municipalities.
The Municipalities are Nanumba North in the Northern Region, Kpone Katamanso in the Greater Accra Region and Akuapem North in the Eastern Region.
Dubbed “Safety of Markets & Pre-empting Stigmatization of COVID-19 Survivors: An Integrated Hygiene Behaviour Change Campaign”, the 12-month project is one of the projects under the Mastercard Foundation COVID-19 Recovery and Resilience Programme. It was designed based on WaterAid’s extensive experience in running national and local hygiene behaviour change campaigns under their ABCDE (Assess, Build, Create, Deliver and Evaluate) steps of the Behaviour Centred Design Approach. WaterAid will also partner relevant institutions to pre-empt stigmatization against recovered COVID-19 patients.
The project was kick-started with a start-up meeting in Nanumba North Municipal Assembly, one of the three beneficiary Municipal assemblies.
Briefing the press after the start-up meeting in the Nanumba North Municipal Assembly, Bimbila, the Head of Programme, Mr. Jesse Coffie Danku who represented the Country Director of WaterAid said the start-up meeting will also be held for the Kpone Katamanso and the Akuapem North Municipal Assemblies, after which a national launch will be organized in Accra.
He said the overall objective of the start-up meetings is to promote shared understanding and secure commitments among key stakeholders of the project, which will subsequently contribute to ensuring the effective implementation of the project in line with WaterAid and donor requirements. He stated that the project was aimed at supporting government-led initiatives in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic in the municipality.
According to Mr. Danku, Government of Ghana since the outbreak of the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has taken a number of initiatives to fight the spread of the pandemic. These include promoting hand hygiene as one of the effective way’s citizens can protect themselves and their close families.
He explained that as part of the project, WaterAid will also be working with health professionals and psychologists to pre-empt stigmatization of COVID-19 patients and to also support their integration into their respective communities and places of business.
Mr Danku further said he was happy with the outcome of the meeting and practically the commitment shown by the Municipal authority leadership who ensured that all those who matters were part of the meeting. He said WaterAid only works with Local Government Authorities that have demonstrated strong leadership and what they have seen so far assured them that they have made the right choice of working with the Nanumba North Municipality. He thanked Mastercard Foundation for partnering with WaterAid to support the government’s fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Nanumba North Municipal Chief Executive Hon. Abdulai Yaquob who chaired the meeting said he was extremely happy WaterAid and its partners have come to the municipality to support the fight against the pandemic and was particularly happy with the stigmatization component of the project.
According to the MCE, the assembly has a number of recovered patients, and so such an initiative will help prepare the minds of community members to see recovered patients as their own and not as outcasts. He was again happy that, the project is going to take into consideration what the assemblies have been doing and seeks to do in order to ensure that resources are taken to where it is needed most.
Hon. Yaquob expressed gratitude to WaterAid and the Mastercard Foundation for such an initiative and pledged the assembly’s support to ensure the realization of the project objectives.