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A screenshot of the video conference on Thursday/Photo: TANG e.V.

Germany: Merkel confers with migrant organisations over COVID-19

As the number of new coronavirus cases spikes in Germany, the federal government has reached out to migrant organisations in the country to seek their support for its containment efforts.

On Thursday, Chancellor Angela Merkel, Minister of State for Integration, Annette Widmann-Mauz, and Federal Health Minister Jens Spahn parleyed with representatives of migrant organisations and religious communities at a video conference on how to stop the massively increasing corona infection rates in the country.

Dr Sylvie Nantcha, chairman of The African Network of Germany (TANG), thanked the Chancellor for her good management of the pandemic, and the integration minister for the “extremely helpful” multilingual information about COVID-19 on a website launched by her office in March.

Ms Nantcha called on Minister Spahn to create a platform where the issue of migrant health would be discussed regularly and not only in times of crisis.

Dr Sylvie Nantcha, chairman of The African Network of Germany (TANG), which is starting a new phase of its awareness and sensitisation campaign in the African community on the coronavirus epidemic/Photo: TANG

 

“With our campaign ‘Coronavirus #TANG clarifies’ we reached more than six million people during the first lockdown. Now we want to start a second awareness campaign,” said Dr Nantcha. “We invite other migrant organisations to join in. Come and join us!”

The virtual conference with Chancellor Merkel and the minsters was also attended by representatives of the Turkish, Arab and Asian, among other, communities.

TANG launched an awareness and sensitisation campaign about the COVID-19 disease in the Black community at the beginning of the pandemic’s outbreak. The first phase of the campaign tagged Coronavirus TANG #Telefonaktion, which kicked off on 17 March, mobilised community associations to inform their members properly about the coronavirus disease.

READ ALSO Remain alert, Corona is still there! TANG charges Africans in Germany

The second phase of the sensitisation campaign, launched on 7 May and tagged Aktion #Coronavirus #TANG klärt auf (Action#Coronavirus#TANG clarifies), in addition to creating greater awareness of the disease in the African community also provided current information on the relaxation of lockdown measures and other official policies.

Nantcha said TANG reached more than 6 million people by phone, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, spreading information about the disease and government efforts to contain it. 

TANG, a network of more than 700 African associations and individual members in Germany, has distributed more than 6,000 self-made fabric masks to members and refugee homes since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic in March.

Femi Awoniyi

More about The African Network in Germany (TANG) at http://tang-ev.de/

READ ALSO Website informs Germany’s migrant communities about COVID-19 in English, French, other languages

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