The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), on Tuesday donated Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs), and assorted items to Sokoto State to contain the COVID-19 pandemic
UNFPA Programme Officer in the state, Gloria Enueze, presented the items to the state government at the Emergency Operation Centre (EOC), State Specialist Hospital, Sokoto.
Enueze said the UNFPA was supporting the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic in the country through the EU-UN Basket Fund in Response to COVID-19 Pandemic.
She said the support was for the implementation of risk communication and community engagement activities.
According to the UNFPA official, the intervention is designed to contain the spread of the pandemic, enhance access to quality reproductive healthcare services, as well as mitigate the effects of the pandemic.
She further said that the activities aimed at reversing the negative impact of COVID-19 across the country and ensure equal access to essential health services through social and economic analytics.
“It is geared towards ensuring proactive early recovery and social protection activities, including behavioral change communication messages, targeting vulnerable groups.
“Sokoto State was selected as one of the states in the North West that benefited from the project with overall coordination by the UNFPA Kaduna sub-office.
“The programme is to orient and train a pool of vulnerable adolescents (boys, girls and women), on the use of face masks, in other to strengthen the COVID -19 response.
“The project focused on three high burden Local Government Areas (LGAs), that comprised Wamakko, Sokoto South and Dange-Shuni,” Enueze said.
She listed the programme achievements to include distribution of PPEs and consumables in three LGAs, and provision of essential (Sexual Reproductive Health (SRH) services, including Family Planning (FP) and COVID-19 related supports.
The Programme Officer further said other services comprised support to community champions and youth networks, to develop community action plans and become COVID-19 Youth Ambassadors.
She also listed other activities as training of health facility workers, including private hospitals, on risk mitigation and protective measures to institute IPC protocols, organising talk shows and phone-in programmes, including jingles in three different radio stations in Sokoto State.
Dr Abdurrahman Ahmad, the Director Public Health in Sokoto State Ministry of Health, commended the UNFPA for the gesture and assured it of judicious use of the items to safeguard citizens’ health.
Ahmad said the items would be distributed to UNFPA supported health facilities, as well as to others with high priority needs, in order to improve public health.
He explained that the UNFPA had been supporting Sokoto government on Visco Vagina Fistula (VVF), Family Planning and Maternal Services, including the provision of maternal waiting rooms.
“We look further to partner with UNFPA on expanding Family Planning Services, as people are becoming more aware and demands for the services are going higher,” Ahmad said.
According to him, the present donations of Liquid Hand Wash, hand sanitisers, face shields and other items, will also argument efforts towards containing the gastroenteritis outbreak that is being affecting some parts of the state. (NAN)