Hen Mpoano is working in collaboration with district health directorates, as well as population health and environment (PHE) champions, to strengthen community resilience amidst Covid-19 pandemic in remote small-scale fishing and coastal communities in Ghana. Currently it is working in communities in the Western Region. These communities include Adelekazo, Eziom, Ajomoro Eshiem, Kukuaville and Sanwoma in the Nzema East and Ellembelle districts.
Working in collaboration with the United States Forest Service (USFS) and the USAID/Ghana Sustainable Fisheries Management Project over the past few years, Hen Mpoano has supported these communities to develop sound estuarine fisheries management practices and sustainable management of adjacent mangrove ecosystems. Furthermore, through Hen Mpoano’s interventions, trust and relationships have been established between district health services and PHE volunteers. Unfortunately, as the Covid-19 pandemic takes its toll on these communities, their natural resources will likely witness pressures of harvesting as they are the only sources of survival for these remote and poor communities.
According to the Deputy Director of Hen Mpoano, Stephen Kankam, ‘’we just have to understand that these communities already are constrained in terms of health care access and delivery because they are located within some of the remotest parts of Ghana and the physical barriers against access to healthcare means that within the framework of the Covid-19 pandemic, it will even be crucial to receive the necessary support and services to ensure that their health system is resilient going into the future.” One of the key constraints of these communities, he said, was that given that Covid-19 was disrupting the market and supply chains of the livelihoods of residents in these communities.