An intern’s experience in Northern Region: Guest post by Nafisah Karimu

Participants in MADE’s graduate internship programme spent four weeks with partner agribusinesses, travelling to smallholder farmer communities with information on COVID-19 preparedness as well as good agricultural practices. This guest series presents their experiences in the field in their own words and photos.

Nasfisah Karimu is a graduate of Damango Agricultural College. She completed a MADE internship with Batbak Ltd, located in the Northern Region, during June–July 2020.

The photo above shows hand washing as demonstrated by Madam Asana at Kabonaayili farming community, which is located in the Tamale Metropolitan District. I visited this community as an intern from MADE, assigned to Bat Bak Services.

I interacted with Madam Asana on COVID-19, which she said she is aware of, and this is how they have been practising handwashing under running water whenever they do anything (i.e. visit the toilet or come in from outside to the house). When any other person is visiting them in the house, she added, the person has to wash his or her hands with soap before entering to help prevent the spread of the virus.

This is Madam Abiba, who I met when I visited her community to educate them on the COVID-19 pandemic and the protocols that need to be observed. Fortunately, she had a little knowledge about the disease. She is a farmer in Kpalung, a village situated in Savelugu District. During my visit, she told me about how she has been practising measures to prevent the spread of the disease. She always wears gloves to pick things up outside her house, and I advised her to keep practising this. I also told her to make sure she disposes of gloves at a suitable place, since they cannot be washed and reused.

This is Wunitera Women’s Group at Tali in Tolon District, shown maintaining social distancing. I visited the group to educate them on COVID-19 pandemic protocols, which they said they are aware of. They said they have been practising handwashing with soap under running water, but they didn’t have face masks to wear when moving out from their homes. Fortunately, at the time of my visit Bat Bak Services was providing nose masks, which I distributed to the group. They are wearing these in the photo. In the end, I advised them to keep wearing the nose masks when moving out from their homes, as well as washing their hands frequently with soap under running water, and also to observe social distancing when they are in public to prevent the spread of the disease.

In this picture Madam Salamatu is demonstrating handwashing using a Veronica bucket installed at Yoggu farming community, also in Tolon District. On my internship I educated members of the community on COVID-19. Madam Salamatu said they are aware of it and have been practising handwashing as one of the preventive measures. Madam Salamatu then demonstrated the use of the bucket; Madam Abiba can be seen observing. Bat Bak Services provided nose masks which I distributed during the visit. I advised them to always practice all the preventive measures to prevent the spread of the virus.

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