By; ALEX UANGBAOJE, Zaria
A Non Governmental Organization (NGO), Women Connect Initiative (WCI) on Tuesday launched an awareness campaign to reduce the prevalence of Prolonged Diagnosed Infections (PDI) in the state in Kaduna State, after identifying the need to create awareness among rural women and secondary school girls in public schools in the state.
Speaking at the official launch of the campaign in Zaria, Director of the NGO, Hajiya Murjanatu Suleiman-Shika, noted that the campaign has become imperative considering the increased cases of PDI among rural women and girls saying “PDI is fast becoming a problem for girls of secondary school age especially in the north”.
“There is a paucity of knowledge concerning causes and prevention of PDI in rural communities as many still blame the spread of the disease to bad luck or evil spirit. Worse, many rural women believe and depend on native palliatives to treat PDI; a practice that has not stopped prevalence. For girls in public schools, the condition is not good as toilets are mostly untidy and has only a limited number of toiletries to keep them healthy.
“We have found out that the problem has been that of lack of information, not money as many believed. The PDI Awareness Campaign which we launched today is to take information on sustainable living to the hinterlands and public schools. It is a state wide campaign which would run for one month beginning from March to April this year. We are also testing and providing treatments for women and girls facing PDI for the entire month.
“Our campaign is inspired by the health programs of Future Assured, an organization owned by Her Excellency, AishaBuhari, the First Lady of Nigeria. Future Assured is one of the committed Nigerian non-government organizations that has emphasized maternal health and has done well to support rural women and girls in the north”, she said.
On his part, Director of Programs of the NGO, Ihidero VictorOsae lauded the dedication of Future Assured in supportinghealth initiatives in northern Nigeria noting that “the condition of rural women and girls is a cause for concern for us in Women Connect Initiative.
The finding from our recently concluded research projects that there will be increased cases of infertility among women and girls in parts of the region if PDI is not taken seriously,” he said.