COVID-19: Oxlade, OSIWA parley on mental health of survivors in W/Africa | Dailytrust

COVID-19: Oxlade, OSIWA parley on mental health of survivors in W/Africa

Second wave of COVID-19 pandemic
Second wave of COVID-19 pandemic

The Oxlade Consulting, a civil society organisation (CSO), has expressed concern over the mental and psycho-social impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on citizens of West African countries.

The Lead Partner of the organisation, Adeniyi Agunloye, who expressed the concern on Thursday in Abuja at a media briefing, said that the organisation, in partnership with the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) would embark on an 18-month project to access the mental effect of the pandemic in the West African region with a focus on Nigeria, Ghana, and Senegal.

According to him, beyond the economic impact of the pandemic that has disrupted the lives of people across the world, the pandemic has also had psycho-social effects such as loneliness, overcrowding of small spaces, and the effect of children being at home, restrictions of movement among others.

“This project, which is to be implemented in select 48 communities across the three countries, will scale and highlight community approaches of resilience to those psycho-social effects of the pandemic as well as their resultant legal and fiscal challenges in the sub-region.

“Since the outbreak of COVID-19 in 2019, individuals, communities and organizations have been impacted both mentally and psychologically from job losses to loss of means of livelihood and people are now finding new ways to live and organizations have built resilience in combating the effect of the pandemic.” Agunloye said.

He said that the project will be centered around youth-led organizations, women community media and public institutions on how they are dealing with the pandemic and how institution leaders can strengthen government response to providing equity in vaccine distribution.

He said, “The project is expected to have a direct reach of 100,000 persons across the region, with an additional 400,000 persons through media placement, digital engagement and radio programming in these West African Countries.

“This work continues our insights and engagement on COVID-19 issues and also leverages on strategic alliances with Connected Development and BudgIT on vaccine equity, fiscal capabilities and governance across Africa.”

Also, Project Manager of the initiative, Mr. Steve Okediji, said that the essence of the project was to give governments a sense of direction and a reference point in case of any other outbreak of such magnitude.

He said that the project would also assess how People Living With Disabilities (PLWDs) were able to build resilience during pandemics.

He also noted that the project will scale and highlight community approaches of resilience to these psycho-social effects of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as various other resultant legal and fiscal challenges because of the pandemic in the sub-region.

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