The Liberia National Red Cross Society (LNRCS) has distributed Infection Prevention Control (IPC) Kits to about 951 schools in 11 of the 15 counties. The IPC Kits are in support of the Safe School Environment Protocol developed by the Ministry of Education (MOE) during the height of the deadly Ebola virus disease (EVD).
The kits are approved by both Ministries of Health (MOH) and Education. They contain brooms, large and small buckets, cartons of soap, thermo-flash and towels for hand washing, brushes, chlorine, hand gloves and brochures, among others.
The distribution of the IPC kits is in fulfillment of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed between the Liberia National Red Cross Society (LNRCS) and the MOE under the Safe School Environment Protocol as part of the Red Cross’ EVD response.
LNRCS Public Relations Officer, Oniel Bestman said the counties that have benefitted from the distribution are Montserrado, Grand Bassa, River Gee, Bomi, Gbarpolu and Sinoe. Grand Kru, Nimba, Margibi, Rivercess, and Bong are the other benefitting counties.
Mr. Bestman said the IPC kits for 28 schools in Grand Gedeh was delayed due to bad road network, but was grateful that the consignment has finally reached the county, where they are expected to be distributed in the coming days.
The LNRCS, with support from the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, offered to help the government to administer and distribute the IPC kits to 1,016 schools across the country, training of teachers and monitoring of school programs.
Red Cross Secretary General, Fayiah Tamba, in a release, said providing infection prevention control kits in schools is a positive development that will create a healthy environment for learning and help keep students from getting sick.
“The Red Cross feels strongly that increased interest in water, sanitation and hygiene in schools to contribute to a safe and healthy learning environment is a positive development. Special steps must be taken to accelerate and coordinate progress on how students can keep practicing sanitation and hygiene in schools,” Tamba said.
He added that the proportion of schools without access to basic sanitation is a key issue and the LNRCS is determined to improve sanitation in all schools.
The LNRCS SG noted that the donation is the entity’s way of promoting safe hygiene practices in schools in line with the Safe School Environment Protocol developed by the MOE.
The Red Cross partners with MOE in getting the lists of schools to which the items are being donated in the counties.
The next plan of the Red Cross is monitoring the items given to the various schools to ensure that they are used for the intended purposes.
The distribution exercise started after the Red Cross provided training to representatives of the schools, students and parent-teacher associations in temperature taking, checking for symptoms and hand washing to ensure compliance with the MOH safety protocols.