Snakebite deaths and disability in my family called me to action
I am a global health researcher from Ghana and the principal investigator of the Hamish Ogston Foundation and Global Snakebite Initiative 2020 Education small snakebite grant project, titled “Community Engagement in the Prevention and Control of Snakbite in the Ahafo Region of Ghana”.
my motivation and interest in addressing the snakebite canker stemmed from the unspeakable history of snakebite in my family
I have been contributing to efforts to mitigate snakebite in Ghana and Sub-Saharan Africa through research, community engagement and advocacy since 2013.
Hailing from an agrarian community, my motivation and interest in addressing the snakebite canker stemmed from the unspeakable history of snakebite in my family, having experienced five mortalities and two suffering from life disabilities. There was no possibility of looking the other way. This would clearly be my life’s mission to become a champion of those who needed a voice.
My keen interest in snakebite research and advocacy has lead me to engage in snakebite research and continual advocacy screenings of the ‘Minutes to Die’ documentary and snakebite prevention videos to students and staff of selected schools (College of Health Yamfo, Adventist Senior High School-Tamale), the Hospital Road Seventh-Day Adventist Church-Tamale and the staff of Orcas Global Company Limited Tamale to mark the International Snakebite Awareness Day on September 19, 2019.
I also participated in activities to mark the first-ever World NTD Day on January 30, 2020, which highlighted the problem of snakebite across the globe. I also actively shared widely the profiles of the Women Snakebite Champions on social media to mark the 2020 edition of the International Snakebite Awareness Day on September 19, 2020.
My current research seeks to engage, educate and empower community members by screening and discussing snakebite prevention measures using various tools including audiovisuals. With the appropriate interventions, participants will be equipped with the know-how of snakebite prevention and be empowered to take appropriate action when a bite occurs by getting the snakebite victims to the nearest health facility to receive recommended and effective treatment.