South Sudan’s internally displaced persons raise awareness on COVID-19 pandemic

Monday, May 11th, 2020 04:45 |
A local trader (L) looks at a flyer showing preventive measures against COVID-19, at a camp in Juba, capital of South Sudan. (Xinhua/Daniel Majak)

South Sudan’s internally displaced persons (IDPs) living in Mangateen settlement, a suburb of capital Juba, have joined the fight against COVID-19 disease through awareness creation using the local dialect.

Nyakong Gatkuer, a female leader at the displaced camp said they use door-to-door campaign with translated information about COVID-19 targeting illiterate members of the community.

The number of people who are now aware of the viral respiratory disease has grown exponentially thanks to the awareness campaign using the local dialect, she said.

“The information disseminated on coronavirus prevention in the recent past has helped the community in the sense that people have now shouldered responsibilities to guard themselves and their loved ones from the spread of the virus,” Gatkuer said.

As a result, most of them could now involve in information sharing to avoid the spread of the coronavirus in the camp, she added.

Gatkuer said her team of volunteers in the camp move with a megaphone and printed material informing locals how to wash their hands with clean water and soap alongside social distancing.

Mona Monytuil, a colleague of Gatkuer in the camp said though the spread of coronavirus had scared residents in the past, their intervention has unleashed some hope.

John Jal Diew, deputy chairperson of Mangateen internally displaced persons, said the camp host over 16,000 residents, adding that the awareness has improved people’s understanding of the novel coronavirus.

“This campaign has helped locals to learn more about the spread of the disease. They can now study what has been written on the stickers. Many people are now able to read the information regarding how to prevent themselves from coronavirus,” Diew said.

He said the campaign also tackled rumors and myths surrounding the disease.

South Sudan has 156 confirmed COVID-19 cases with two recoveries and no death reported since the disease was reported in the country on April 5.

Last week, the high-level task-force on COVID-19 decided to ease rules and directives which were issued as part of measures to help contain the spread of COVID-19 in the country.

The world’s youngest nation has shut all learning institutions, imposed a night curfew and introduced movement and transport restrictions as part of measures to contain the spread of the respiratory disease. (Xinhua)

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