July 2020: My name is Tabitha Shali Mbogho. I am a Nursing Officer and a UN health volunteer currently stationed at Moi Referral Hospital in Voi town, Taita Taveta County.
It has been an exciting experience serving the community…sensitizing and raising their awareness on COVID-19 pandemic on how to keep themselves safe; conducting both targeted and mass testing in the community. One of the challenges I have noted, the community has not yet fully embraced the reality of (the health dangers posed by) COVID-19. Through our regular health talks, I have had an opportunity to educate and help my community better understand what COVID-19 is, how it can affect their health and how to prevent it from spreading in the community.
Being a UNV has presented me a unique and an eye-opening opportunity and a great learning experience. Besides working as a COVID-19 frontline health specialist, I also have access to a wide range of online courses and trainings to better my knowledge and skills through the continuous learning programme. And the constant communication with UNDP through the UNDP/UNV coordinator checking on my wellbeing and providing me with constant updates. I have also attended several virtual meetings with UNDP including with Management and Devolution programme staff.
UNV and UNDP have afforded me a platform to work directly with the community as well as in the hospital in response to COVID-19. The community has been receptive and welcoming, which has led to more open and meaningful conversations on how they can stay safe from COVID-19 and continue with their daily lives uninterrupted.