Women Leaders in Polio Eradication: Raquelina Mazuze

60-year-old Raquelina Mazuze is proud of her contribution to the fight against polio as a social mobilizer in her native Mozambique.

Raquelina Mazuze is a social mobilizer in Mozambique. © WHO/AFRO

Following the recent outbreak of Wild poliovirus type 1 in the country, she has been helping to prepare her community for a forthcoming vaccination drive, which aims to protect nearly 4 million children in the four most at-risk provinces.

Having been involved in the health sector for decades, Raquelina also spends her days encouraging other older people around her to stay active, eat healthily and to keep serving their community, just as she does.

According to the World Bank, people aged 65 and above represent only 3% of the total population in Mozambique. But Raquelina sees her age and many years of experience as an asset rather than a hindrance.

¨I am not afraid of getting old,” she says. “I feel proud because I am active, and my experience is key when it comes to contributing to the health of the people in my community. ¨

Raquelina doesn’t let her age restrict her ambitions either. “I want to go back to school and further my education,” she says. “I will keep moving forward. I will do whatever I am supposed to do. No one can take that away from me.”

Originally posted on WHO AFRO.


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