Project improves health response for Leone villagers

Fifty households in the village of Leone are in a much better position to fight off health challenges thanks to newly installed sinks designed to promote hand washing as part of COVID19 preparedness.

The project is spearheaded by the Adventist Development Relief Agency (A.D.R.A.) Samoa and funded by Canada Fund.

Asiata Apineru Wright, of A.D.R.A., said the main objective of the project is to assist the villagers of Leone with COVID-19 preparedness and to create awareness among the communities about better hygiene.

The project was in response to data from the Samoa Statistics Bureau during the 2016 census which stated that there are more than 500 residents in Leone and 77 households. 

“We found out that this is one of the disadvantaged and marginalised areas and it is a vulnerable area,” he said.

Asiata explained that the village community also has some of the young street vendors selling products on the streets in town.

“And some families have more than ten members. But before the implementation of the project, we assessed the whole village in terms of its households.

“After the assessment we conducted a community consultation informing them what the progress of the project, after that we had one week advance training in terms of how to care and look after someone who is infected with COVID-19.”

The project is a home based focus which affects all family members.

In the event that Samoa has more than a hundred COVID-19 cases and local hospitals cannot accommodate the need, Asiata said that some villagers will resort to home-base care which was part of the training conducted by the World Health Organisation.

“But the training did not only focus on COVID-19,  we also looked at other diseases such as preventative measures for diarrheal diseases and worm infestation because of poor hygiene, and waterborne diseases and other diseases caused through contaminated water and food.

“We emphasise hand washing being very significant as part of preventative measures not only for COVID-19 but other diseases.

“This is why there were 50 sinks or wash facilities installed within each household’s homes to promote hand washing before consumption of food. This is ADRA’s response to the national strategy to combat COVID-19.”

A father of six from Leone, Saio Tosoni told the Samoa Observer that the project has helped their family greatly.

“With the installation of the new sink my family has gotten used to washing hands straight after using the restroom.

“I thank A.D.R.A. Samoa and the Canada Fund for an important project that makes a difference in the lives of others.

“My wife and I are unemployed but our family depends on the sea for survival. I believe that an important factor to note is being aware of ways to prevent the spread of the coronavirus by maintaining hygienic practices.”

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