Wednesday, 26 May 2021

SIHA: A Pandemic Perspective

In spite of the fact that we are in 2021 as of now, the Year 2020 (which would make for an incredible movie or documentary) continues to haunt us. Giving off total he who shall not be named vibes. The unprecedented turn of events resulted in SIHA going fully virtual. From all the SIHA 101’s, group bonding sessions, and now the actual internship (rip our 2021 Tanzania trip), Google Meet has been our saviour. Unfortunately, time zones and wifi connections have been somewhat villainous. Despite that, the game and wine nights make up for it!  Though we all have yet to meet in person, the team this year have become a tight-knit group - all from behind a screen! 

Anthony, our Project Manager, and supposed up and becoming artist, keeps us on track and gives us some laughs. Our charming and hilarious In-Country Representatives consist of Charles, MK, Pilly and Pastone (aka the Skinny Legend, or mwembamba in Swahili). They are the joy in all our meetings. Sunny and Jenna are the lead interns, or as Anthony likes to say “pseudo-interns or whatever”. They always keep the conversation fun and interesting by giving us great stories and advice based on their life experiences (LOL) all while directing us amateur interns on how to go about... basically everything. Now, us “amateurs” are a passionate group of five women (the new famous five 👀 ??) consisting of Akanksha, Anastasia, Ellen, Samina and myself, Sadika. Though we are new to all this, we work great together and are crazy excited to be on the team.  

Our goals as the International Team are primarily focused on two things. Firstly, we wish to continue the WASH Program, which provides children in Tanzania with education regarding water, sanitation and hygiene based on a curriculum we have developed. Our second goal is to initiate and implement a Menstrual Hygiene Program, which would involve also developing a curriculum catered towards the children. This program aims to not only spread awareness regarding menstrual hygiene, but to also disengage from the taboo regarding menstruation. 

We are also working on things aside from these projects such as organizing our google drive, revamping our social media platforms and most importantly, bringing a joke of the day to the meetings (thanks for the pressure Charles!).