We are all living a very different time, because of coronavirus pandemia. Pandemia has locked us in our homes but we are still planning our project-trip to Gambia.
The ministery of health in Gambia has given recommendations for citizens, for example students and workers to return from Senegal to Gambia. Guidance has also been given on the importance of hand washing and hand washing points have been obtained in the villages. They have been used a lot.
We received few emails describing the current situation in Gambia and the MMK-preschool. Health care in Gambia is very limited, so if the coronavirus spreads in the country, the consequences will be fatal. There is very limited hospitalcare for patients in public health, and there are not enough medicines or ventilators if the virus spreads more. There are also private hospitals but they cost more so citizens can not afford it. Coronavirus testing should be free for everyone.
Locals are afraid of this disease because they are aware that it spreads quickly and hospitalcare is very limited. Community is a very important part of Gambian culture, so challenges have emerged in isolation. The locals are used to being together and spending time with other villagers. The streets have become empty and quiet.
MMK has closed preschools, but the opportunities for children’s homeschooling are non-existent. The children in Gambia are usually at work if they are not studying. For many children school is the only place to play and see other children. Because of this, children are upset that schools are closed. School staff has also moved to their homes to stay isolation with their families.
We will continue to plan the project and keep an eye on the pandemic situation. We hope that the situation will change so we can travel to Gambia in October as planned.
Julia & Salla