CEDS-Ghana, a Tamale-based NGO, has donated face masks to students, farmers and processors in three assemblies in the Northern and North East Regions to help combat the spread of the COVID-19 in the area.
The beneficiaries included; the Sagnarigu Municipal Directorate of Education, which received 100 face masks to be distributed to Junior High School (JHS) students, who resumed school on Monday, June 29, 50 vegetable farmers at Libga in the Savelugu Municipality, all in the Northern Region, and 50 sheabutter processors at Zangbum in the West Mamprusi Municipality of the North East Region.
Mr Danyuam Eric Bandim, Head of Programmes at CEDS-Ghana, who presented the items to the authorities of the Sagnarigu Municipal Directorate of Education, said it formed part of the organisation’s education and health promotion objectives to encourage the public to wear face masks to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mr Danyuam said the returning final year JHS students were epidemiologically classified in the high risk group of the virus as they came from different communities amidst increasing numbers of infections.
Madam Rakiatu Mahama, Deputy Director in-charge of Human Resource Management at the Sagnarigu Municipal Directorate of Education commended CEDS-Ghana for the initiative and gave assurance that the masks would be distributed amongst the intended beneficiaries.
Madam Mahama said the School Health Unit in the Municipality would intensify education on the COVID-19 protocols for the safety and health of students and their parents.
At Libga, a farming community, Mr Danyuam advised vegetable farmers to observe acceptable water, sanitation and hygiene practices at home, farm and market premises to remain safe and protect the health of their contacts.
Mr Iddrisu Ziblim, a vegetable farmer, thanked CEDS-Ghana for the support and assured the management of CEDS-Ghana that community members would adhere to hand washing with soap and social distancing protocols to stay free of the virus.
Mr Abdul Fatawu Sulemana, focal person for CEDS-Ghana, who is also representative of Asiribisi Self Help Initiative, a partner organization of CEDS-Ghana, who presented the face masks to sheabutter processors at Zangbum, advised the beneficiaries to play their parts by adhering to the safety protocols to help curb the spread of the disease.
Madam Adishetu Seidu, member of the Bangmarigu Sheabutter Processing group at Zangbum lamented and said the COVID-19 outbreak affected their major source of livelihoods as their customers, who exported sheabutter, had not come to purchase their products since the outbreak of the disease.
Madam Seidu, therefore, called on the government to extend the economic stimulus package for small businesses to include; sheabutter processors in the region.
CEDS-Ghana exists to support free communities of poverty and inequalities through sustainable development interventions using the community readiness model approach.