Supporting monitoring visit to Covid-19 awareness preventive interventions
Mr. Viwemi Chavula conducted random visits to selected districts in the northern region of Mzimba, Mzuzu City, Nkhatabay and Rumphi. The trip, among others, aimed at expanding knowledge and understanding of NICE’s civic education covid-19 response and offering contributions on how to strengthen the civic education, Covid-19 preventive interventions and idea generation for resource mobilization agenda of NICE. The intervention were timely input as the country is working on adopting new life styles in the wake of Covid-19. The visits revealed that NICE offices using the volunteer structures are highly engaged with duty bearers and key stakeholders as they are members of the Council Public Health Emergency Management Committee (Communication and Education clusters). The offices through the volunteers are disseminating the preventive measures through a number of measures including hosting radio programs on the community radio; use of experts to localize the message and outreach efforts (door to door campaign). For the outreach campaigns, the teams were encouraged to consider introducing testimonies of the women and girls as part of bottom up programming. Gendered dimensions of the Covid-19 community response will assist to establish existing and persisting inequalities and help in designing plans and budgets both at local and national level. “Deliberately targeting women groups is encouraged as there are often left behind in any development, planning and budgeting discourse at community level especially where issues affecting their lives are discussed”, Chavula observed. He further encouraged the teams to consider developing a standard guideline on role and responsibility of NICE volunteers in the Covid-19 fight as knowledge products: What has been their role in the Covid-19 preventive measures strategy? What value are they bringing which could have been a gap if they were not there? How do they foresee the sustenance of the initiative after this support ends? On supporting NICE’s resource generation agenda, the officers were encouraged to challenge themselves to isolate initiatives that can spur more funding based on lessons of their implementation. For instance, Mzimba, Nkhatabay, Rumphi are districts that patriarchy dominates. Through periodic products officers can be sharing with resource mobilization point persons at secretariat: How are they overcoming patriarchy/harmful cultural practices? How are they strategizing their programming which other partners can learn from? What are the dynamics for civic education in a city/lakeshore district/rural district and the covid-19 fight?
Viwemi serves as a chairperson of resource mobilization sub-committee of the board.