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Meet Sierra Leone’s Essential Workers: The Communications Manager

by Alhassan Lamin
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Work was good before COVID-19; I had just gotten a promotion. The whole team was traveling through Sierra Leone, and we had different contracts with clients. We were among the first to send out public education messages about COVID-19. After that, things went downhill, cases started rising, and we had to close the office for several weeks. When we resumed, and the risk is that I had to commute on public transport because I don’t own a car. That was very scary, seeing how the pandemic took lives, but I had to because we had work to do. 

I went into a state of depression. I decided to withdraw from my mom, niece, and nephew to prevent exposure at home. I also suffer from migraines, with similar symptoms to that of COVID-19. I have to do a medical checkup every six months, but I have not done any this year due to the pandemic. 

I worked throughout the pandemic. At work, we provided medical supplies for the C19 Dignity Project, and I was the lead photographer. That was so scary. We had to travel to almost all the treatment and isolation centers to deliver supplies. At a point, people in quarantine threw stones at me. 

The other downside is that our whole team had to take a pay cut. At that point, most of the home’s responsibilities were on me, so to be on the safe side, we had to cut down on our expenses. My mom is a teacher, so when schools were closed, she wasn’t earning anything. 

My family is Christian; the pandemic affected our faiths because we stopped going to church. Right now, things have gone back to normal. My mom resumed work, my sister started working, and my pay is back to normal. So, we thank God for that.  

Credit: OSIWA

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