Coronavirus – Cameroon: 145 Commonwealth Points of Light

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The story of Comfort Mussa – Comfort Mussa is the founder of SISTERSPEAK237, which supports disabled and vulnerable people in Yaounde by coordinating the provision of hand sanitisers and masks, and sharing key messaging around COVID-19. Comfort has also started a project across the seven regions of Cameroon to ensure that response services are gender and disability inclusive. Comfort has been a long-time supporter of women and minority groups, empowering them through her organisation to tell their stories and breaking the silence on taboo subjects seldomly reported.

As part of the legacy of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in London 2018, Her Majesty The Queen – as Head of the Commonwealth – is thanking inspirational volunteers across the 54 Commonwealth nations for the difference they are making in their communities and beyond, by recognising one volunteer from each Commonwealth country every week. By sharing these stories of service, the Commonwealth Points of Light celebrates inspirational acts of volunteering across the Commonwealth. It also helps to inspire others to make their own contribution to tackling some of the greatest social challenges of our time, including the current COVID-19 pandemic.

As Comfort said:

“I am absolutely delighted to be recognised for this award. I’m honoured to accept this award and I share it with all the volunteers at SISTERSPEAK237 and our Access Community for persons with disabilities. With the COVID-19 pandemic my team and I are constantly asking ourselves, what can we do to help? Our drive has been to meet the needs of people in vulnerable communities, especially for women and persons with disabilities, through advocacy, campaigning and story-telling. The impact we have had so far is encouraging and makes volunteering worthwhile. I thank Her Majesty The Queen, for this recognition”.

Rowan James Laxton, UK High Commissioner in Cameroon, said:

“My hearty congratulations to Comfort Mussa on winning this year’s prestigious Commonwealth Points of Light award in Cameroon. Her unstinting support for women’s rights, social justice and public health is making a huge difference to the lives of some of the most disadvantaged people here. Her work is a shining example of the impact that dedicated and skilled volunteers can make to brighten people’s lives.”

Previous laureates from Cameroon

2018: Dr George Bwelle of ASCOVIME, a Yaounde-based medical volunteering organisation helping disadvantaged people with free medical support.

2018: Noela Lyonga of the NOELA LYONGA FOUNDATION based in Buea, a volunteer organisation that mobilises youth to become actors of change in their community.

2019: Fadimatou Noutchemo Simo of the YOUNG AFRICAN AVIATION PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATION (YAAPA) for her work as a volunteer encouraging youth and especially young girls to take up careers in aviation.

The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting

The Commonwealth is a diverse community of 54 nations that work together to promote prosperity, democracy and peace. The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting brought together leaders from all the 54 Member countries to reaffirm common values, address shared global challenges and agree how to work to create a better future for all citizens, especially young people. Voluntary service is a vital part of this agenda, which is why Her Majesty The Queen has chosen to recognise outstanding volunteers across the Commonwealth in this special way.

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of British High Commission – Yaounde.

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