The African Network of Germany (TANG) held its corona crisis video conference for the seventh time on Thursday. Attended by the regional representatives of the organisation from all parts of Germany, the event also launched the second phase of TANG’s ongoing awareness and sensitisation campaign about the COVID-19 disease.
The first phase of the campaign tagged Coronavirus TANG #Telefonaktion, which kicked off on 17 March, mobilises community associations to inform their members properly about the coronavirus pandemic and provide information about the efforts of the government to manage the crisis.
“It’s important that the African community in Germany stays informed and observes the social contact and hygiene rules to protect themselves and others,” said Dr Sylvie Nantcha, chairman of TANG, while opening the conference. She briefed the participants on the decision jointly taken by the Federal Government and the State Governments on 6 May after a virtual meeting between the Chancellor Angela Merkel and the state premiers to relax the lockdown measures in the country.
Ms Nantcha said it was regrettable that false information and fake news continued to be circulated in the social media. This, she said, makes it the more imperative for TANG to continue to forward reliable information and recommendations of the Federal Government, the Federal Ministries and State Governments to the African community.
The second phase of the sensitisation campaign tagged Aktion #Coronavirus #TANG klärt auf (Action#Coronavirus#TANG clarifies), in addition to creating greater awareness of the disease in the African community also provides current information on the ongoing relaxation of lockdown measures and other official policies.
Special attention will be paid to parents who will be sending their children back to school in the next few days and weeks, Ms Nantcha said. “Children find it difficult to keep the necessary distance from their friends after school,” she noted, calling on parents to impress it upon their wards the importance of observing the social contact rules to protect themselves and their families.
At the weekly crisis video conference attended also by a journalist from Morocco, members, mentors and cooperation partners of TANG , a network of more than 700 African associations and individual members in Germany, were informed about the latest developments about the coronavirus pandemic in Africa, with Morocco being the country of focus.
Among other activities currently being carried out under TANG’s COVID-19 awareness campaign is the distribution of 6,000 self-made fabric masks to mentors, mentees, members and refugee homes that are participating in its “Gemeinsam für mehr Teilhabe” (Together for more Participation) project.
TANG will hold about 40 online events on a wide variety of topics connected to the corona crisis in the next few weeks. The group decided to forgo face-to-face events until the end of July in line with recommendations of public health experts that physical meetings should be avoided when possible.
Everyone must show responsibility now, said Dr Nantcha. Her message is: “Protect yourself and others – despite the relaxation of the restriction measures”.
As of Friday morning, Germany has recorded 169,430 cases while 141,700 infected persons have recovered. COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, has killed 7,392 people in the country so far.
Femi Awoniyi with additional information by Petra Kistler
More about The African Network in Germany (TANG) at http://tang-ev.de/