Philipsburg – The Department of Communication (DCOMM), has intensified its public awareness campaign for inner district communities and districts.
Eddy Promo Public Speaker car continues to drive through all districts broadcasting in English, Spanish, French and the Creole languages COVID-19 preventive measures, the CPS information hotline 914, Social Distancing messages and about getting tested for the coronavirus disease.
DCOMM Department Head Maurice Lake, said that this was a very effective way of getting the message out to the inner district communities on the island and in their own language, especially to those who don’t have a phone or internet.
“Getting support from the informal community leaders from the Spanish and Haitian communities has been very positive and another effective way in reaching out to the people in those areas. This is one of the most effective ways. They have a good relationship with their people. We have had the experience where somebody got sick, they called their informal leader and then they reached out to 914 or the Ambulance service.
“The Community Councils in the various districts have also been very active. We have also been working closely with both Presidents and informal leaders from the Haitian and Spanish communities on both sides of the island to get our COVID-19 preventive measures messages out.
“We also have provided multi-language flyers with preventative COVID-19 information to the aforementioned communities which was provided with the assistance of the TelEm Group of Companies and distributed by PSS our national postal service, CPS volunteers and the informal leaders.
“Multi-lingual public service announcements for the broadcast media were also developed and provided to the various radio stations with the assistance of the Bureau Telecommunications & Post. We have been busy with this since back in February and intensified our outreach to these communities over the past weeks.
“We have also been working with multi-lingual radio hosts from these communities who have weekly radio programs as another avenue to reach out to the Haitian and Spanish speaking people.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank them all for the assistance in getting the messages out about how important it is to take preventative measures to prevent the coronavirus disease COVID-19.
“We have very important messages to get across and we are using all mediums in all languages both visual, word of mouth, flyers, SMS phone text messages, Facebook, WhatsApp messaging, the Prime Ministers National Addresses or visual posters in order to get that message out to these communities.
“Everybody has to do their part in order for us to get out of this pandemic. Every individual, every household, everybody, has a role to play in beating COVID-19. We are doing our part, and collectively as a nation we can beat this with all hands-on deck,” Lake said on Thursday.
Multi-lingual (Creole, Spanish, French and English) public service announcements have been airing on the Government Radio Station 107.9 FM since February and have also been playing on other radio stations throughout the country.
Multi-language SMS text messages have also been sent out via the St. Maarten Telephone Company and UTS to customers of both companies, because not everybody has internet data on their phones.