Raise awareness to protect

UNICEF trained 1,500 members of community animation cells in Mbandaka in order to limit the propagation of Ebola and of the coronavirus.

Manuela Huyghues Despointes (translated from Frenc by Darren Ou Yong)
Munie d’un mégaphone, Alphonsine sensibilise la population de son quartier et partage des conseils pour se protéger de la maladie à virus Ebola et du coronavirus.
18 June 2020

“I raise awareness because I deeply love others, and I love to help. I want my community and my family to be in good health.”

Alphonsine Molangi is a “shouter”. Equipped with a megaphone, she raises awareness in her district and shares advice on how to protect oneself from the Ebola virus disease and from the coronavirus.

At the age of 60 years old, Alphonsine gives off an extraordinary charisma and attracts a crowd of people around her. As a teacher of a 5th year primary class, her cheerfulness is contagious. A mother of four children and grandmother to 13 grandchildren, Alphonsine lives in a modest house in the Bokotola district in Mbandaka.

“From 5am onwards, I leave my home with my megaphone to ask the community to respect hygienic measures in order to protect themselves from Ebola and from the coronavirus. I do this again in the evening at 5pm,” explains Alphonsine.

Today, she has become indispensable for her community. Often, when she raises awareness, Alphonsine grabs the attention of the mothers living in the district who, fascinated by the power of Alphonsine’s voice and message, want to know more about Ebola and the coronavirus.

“My love for others is so big that even my daughter of 38 years of age followed my example and became a shouter. We share the streets of the district with each other,” adds Alphonsine.

Alphonsine is part of the 1,500 members of community animation cells in the Mbandaka health zone, trained by UNICEF to limit the propagation of Ebola and the coronavirus.

UNICEF wishes to express its sincere gratitude to Gavi, the Global Partnership for Education, the Solidarity Response Fund, the United States Agency for International Development, the World Bank Group and the Governements of CanadaJapanMalta, the United KingdomGermany and Sweden for their immediate and generous contributions to this critical response.