BY DAYO ADESULU
Beyond the Classroom, in partnership with the Mastercard Foundation, has engaged with 6,000 children in Nigeria on COVID-19 safety protocols.
The community engagement is part of the Mastercard Foundation COVID-19 Public Awareness Campaign, aimed at delivering accurate, timely, and life-saving information on COVID-19 across African countries and communities. . The initiative in Nigeria was rolled out in eleven public and private schools in Lagos and Nassarawa states.
Each child received a free COVID-19 safety pack, containing the educational book, ”There is a new virus in town” written by Raquel Daniel, founder of Beyond the Classroom, and produced in partnership with the Mastercard Foundation.
Raquel explained how the students were educated on the need to wash their hands regularly with soap or use alcohol-based hand sanitisers. They were also advised to always wear nose masks in the correct way while in public and to maintain a social distance of at least 1 meter. The students were encouraged to motivate their parents and guardians to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
According to Nigeria Country Head, at the Mastercard Foundation, Chidinma Lawanson, this community engagement is the second phase of the Mastercard Foundation’s COVID-19 Public Awareness Campaign aimed at educating children aged 7 to 14 years old on COVID-19 preventive measures. She explained that 3,000 children were initially engaged in the first phase of the project last year with a key message to “Protect yourself, Protect your family, and Protect your community #ItsUpToUs”.
The principal Dr Soyemi of Memorial Primary School said, “We would like to express our appreciation to Beyond the Classroom and the Mastercard Foundation for the kind gesture towards our school. This book will continue to create awareness of COVID-19 and ensure that we carry out the necessary protocols. We will also incorporate this book into our co-curriculum activities.