KGOPE HEALTH EXPO BLOG
Author: Keneilwe Manisa
As part of the community public health program (CPH), CIEE students conduct community assessment in order to gain an understanding of some of the major socio-economic, and health issues affecting rural Botswana. After assessments, students in collaboration with different stakeholders organize a health expo to address some of the challenges identified during the community assessments. This semester -fall 2022- , students conducted assessments at Kgope Village, a remote village on the outskirts of Gaborone.
A week closer to the event, and the students got into a meeting with the school of medicine in the University of Botswana as well as, the Ministry of health and wellness and the CIEE staff, to finalize the last bit of Day events as preparations for this Health Expo have been ongoing throughout the semester. Food hampers were bought for the donations to be given to the community and everything was finalized now waiting for the actual day.
The day finally arrived and after an hour's drive out of Gaborone city, we finally got to our destination Kgope Village. As per norm with every gathering happening in his village, The Chief welcomed the CIEE team and its stakeholders and the community for gracing his village. We said grace and all the stakeholders were introduced and we were shortly joined by the primary school students after school.
One of our CIEE students took it upon herself to take the community through a yoga session in the morning as we kick started our day with a bit of exercise. The elderly were a bit shy at first but once they got the hang of it everyone was laughing and enjoying themselves.
We learnt the downward dog which is a good stretch for the back muscles, and learnt how to connect with the body and mind, which was interesting to some of the locals.
The CIEE students also had an Education hub stall where they would speak to and advise the primary school students at Kgope village on different career paths, and what it would take for them to go for the profession they want to go into. The primary school students had to play a trivia game where they guessed which profession aligns with the description they are given and get themselves a prize. Note pads and fun stationery. Their enthusiasm towards this activity was just heartwarming and everyone was participating and super excited for this activity .
The CIEE students also made sure that the community got the opportunity to have a health screening with one of their stakeholders called Novartis. DHMT was also part of the stakeholders CIEE students saw fit to bring into this health expo and have the community donate blood, as well as get tested for Cholesterol, Glucose, Blood Pressure , Diabetes, eye cataracts and many others.
At the end of the Health Expo the CIEE students along with the school of medicine team went around the village, to donate food hampers to some of the families in the community. These were families which through the help of the social workers and welfare department, the village development community and the community at large have chosen as beneficiaries, from their assessments. We wrapped up our day with dance and song and although we did not want to leave, we had to part with Kgope, Until next time