Kenya has confirmed a limited number of COVID-19 cases to date – less than 500. The majority of these have been in the capital Nairobi and coastal areas: however there are now cases in Siaya County, where Positive Aid’s projects are based. All levels of government are poised for the pandemic, and people are going about their lives in strictly prescribed ways. Like other poor nations around the world, with ill-equipped health systems, Kenya has the potential to face unprecedented disaster. Positive Aid is providing essentials to those most vulnerable – soap and face masks, together with information delivered in ways that everyone can understand.
Roads and small market centres throughout our project areas are largely bare these days, with movements and social distancing enforced by police. Fortunately, our Community Health Workers (CHWs) and management are allowed to continue their work during these tough times. Already at the front line in the fight against HIV/AIDS and other communicable diseases, our CHWs are standing strong and helping their communities to protect themselves against COVID-19. The Kenyan Ministry of Health continues to partner with us in order to share information at the grass roots level – our absolute strength.
And so our vital work goes on. CHWs are visiting those sick with HIV/AIDS, and ferrying them to hospital when needed. Instead of holding group meetings, our Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (MNCH) program is reaching pregnant women and new mothers one or two at a time, so that their questions and needs are still met. And while microscope outreaches have temporarily halted, our CHWs are tirelessly sharing knowledge regarding hand washing and general disease prevention throughout their villages. We take our hats off to these brave and skilled volunteers as they continue to make a difference each and every day.