One of the reasons why we have founded AgemO is our aim to offer a new perspective and an improved access to education to young people that have to live under poor conditions. We truly believe that education is something that everyone should have to get access to. Especially in times of a global pandemic, the access to shared education has become more difficult due to necessary sanitary measures. In MEDCs, this issue can be addressed efficiently as there are sufficient financial resources. In LEDCs however, it is not as simple and many young people who strive for good education suffer as a result. Pictures were sent to us showing children with self-made face masks, made from milk cartons as a substitution for cloth masks because they do neither have access nor the financial possibilities to afford proper masks. This frightening truth has shocked us but at the same time motivated us to take action and do something against that.
That’s why we came up with the idea of providing our partner schools in Malawi with masks so that the children have the possibility to learn even in times of Corona. Lhukubula Primary School and M‘Deka primary school, the schools that we supply, employ 40 teachers who teach 2365 students in total. So far we have planned to deliver 150,000 adhesive, single-use masks in cooperation with a mid-size, German company. These masks shall function as a temporary solution until there are enough cloth masks available. A seperate donation appeal will be organised for that as well. The transportation process for the single-use masks is already planned and will be conducted in the coming weeks.
A problem we face with the single-use masks is the question of sustainability. Unfortunately, these masks are neither re-usable nor recycable. Thats why it is so important for us to construct a concept for proper disposal in cooperation with the schools. Nevertheless we see this as a chance to provide safety tools for students and teachers, so that they can follow along the daily routine of education without health risks.
We know that there are many more problems that schools in Malawi are facing in connection with proper education. However, we believe that the safety of learning and teaching, especially in times of the Covid-pandemic, are currently more important and demand immediate action. Even a small factor like a proper face mask can change a lot and help those young people that are willing to gain knowledge.