Corona virus has reached Africa
More and more people are infected with the Corona virus on the African continent. Experts fear an outbreak like in Europe.
Scientists previously suspected that Africa might be untroubled by the virus. However, first assumptions that warmer temperatures might slow down the virus have not been proven.
In Kenya, arrangements are now being made for a “corona lock-down”: schools and shops are closed, curfews have been imposed and international airports have been sealed off. It is questionable, however, whether this will suffice given the already weak African health system and only few available test capacities.
How can transmission be prevented in the slums and remote villages, in which many people live in confined spaces and have no access to running water? Washing hands and other hygiene measures are hardly possible here. Where should all these people go if they are not allowed to leave their house. Life in Africa takes place on the streets – no wonder if you normally live in a mud hut together with ten other people. Even the simple markets where women sell their own vegetables to survive are completley deserted. There is no state social cushioning for the lost profit here.
The Kenyans are now praying that these measures are enough and the virus spares the country. There is also great hope in the country’s very young population, which according to statistics appears to be less affected by the Corona virus. However, this assumption applies to young, healthy Europeans and not to undernourished Kenyans weakened by other diseases (such as malaria).
Our local partner Kimilili Integrated Development Education Program (KIDEP) is also struggling to close the infrastructure in Kenya: schools can no longer be visited and the production of the urgently needed school uniforms had to be stopped due to the power cuts.
Instead, KIDEP distributes mouth and nose masks to the local population, which are sponsored by the local Lions Club.