The Malaria Smart Booth, Naivasha Discon
Article by Simeo Ssebukulu, Malaria Partners Uganda
From 21st to 23rd of April, Rotary District 9213 held its 97th District Conference in Naivasha. The conference saw over one thousand participants and offered an opportunity to Rotarians, Rotaractors, interactors and guests to discuss and vote on important District matters. Local and international speakers too gave information on topics relevant to District members. DISCON was the time to network, reconnect with friends and find inspiration for continuing service and community leadership.
Like with previous conferences, there was a house of friendship at the 97th Conference in Naivasha. MPU took part in exhibiting at the house of friendship Booth to engage partners, including Rotary and Rotaract clubs. Besides advocating for increased stakeholder engagement at the macro level, the fight against Malaria is still viable at the micro-level. Our Booth at the house of friendship focused on sensitizing, mindset changing, and information disseminating.
Five different Mosquito repellent plants were exhibited including Basil, Rosemary, Lemongrass, Neem Tree, and Mint. Guests at the booth walked away with information about each, including their mosquito repellent specifications. Participants got information on how long these plants take to grow and what is required to grow them around their homes. Whereas these were not given out to visitors at the booth, they were encouraged to take pictures of them for reference when they return home. For frequent travelers who may not necessarily move with natural repellents wherever they go and, in a bid, to advocate for minimization of contact between mosquitoes and the human body, the booth had Shea butter mosquito repellent jellies for sale. The jelly made of shea butter and lemongrass is applied as a Vaseline to keep mosquitoes away. This attracted traffic at the booth.
The small grants gospel too featured among the displayed. A screen displaying pictures of Rotary and Rotaract Clubs’ small grants projects communicated how much impact malaria projects could bring in the different club constituencies. The colorful, detailed brochure about the programs, activities, mission, vision, contacts, and the Board of MPU was equally distributed to participants at the conference and visitors to the Booth
The Houses of friendship at DISCONs have had a significant impact on MPU’s mission to ignite a Rotarian campaign against malaria in Uganda; The MPU Board of Directors appreciated the decision to exhibit at the 97th Conference. The 97th DISCON organizing committee is commended for putting together a wonderful conference. Such platforms offer the opportunity to interact with more stakeholders something that makes our vision of eliminating malaria in Uganda, even more visible.
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