Updated: May 2, 2020
Happy new month readers!
And to the Ramadan observers; Ramadan Mubarak! 🌙 May this month bring peace and blessings, especially during these times.
Today in Sierra Leone the #COVID19 stats are as follows:
With the rise in numbers, the President of Sierra Leone; Julius Maada Bio declared a national 72 hour lockdown during his address to the nation speech last night; Thursday, April 30 2020 at 9pm GMT. The lockdown is to take place from Sunday, May 3 - Tuesday, May 5 2020. This marks the second three (3) day lockdown since the novel Coronavirus was first reported in Sierra Leone on March 31 2020 which took place from Sunday, April 5 - Tuesday, April 7 2020.
As we prepare to join the rest of the world again in the confines of our respective homes #StayHome, please be reminded of frequent and correct hand washing hygiene practices and to sensitize those around you.
Remember, this too shall pass 🌸
Looking for things to do during the 3 day lockdown and this month in general as we continue practice social distancing? You've come to the right place 🙂
1. Netflix Party 🍿
Takin' Netflix & chill to another level.
If you have a Netflix account and your internet is strong enough, why not watch with friends? 😄
On Sierra Leonean Twitter also known as #SaloneTwitter we have been enjoying Netflix Party on Friday evenings where a group of us vote for a film and we watch and chat about it.
If you don't have a Netflix account, but have a bank card or access to one, you can set up an account on their website and enjoy a free month trial!
Also, because I am tired of seeing the obvious (well obvious to me but evidently not others) "Free Netflix for 3 months due to Coronavirus" link shared in [Salone] WhatsApp groups, it's FAKE. Please play your part in flattening the misinformation curve by not sharing or clicking on links shared by third parties; a simple Google search can verify information before sharing.
2. Learn A New Recipe 👩🏽🍳👨🏾🍳
For all the #Foodies, food lovers and adventurous eaters out there, this is for you!
Sierra Leonean food blogger and vlogger Latoya Gerber a.k.a The Fat Bastard SL has been teasing us for the past month on her Instagram stories and tweets preparing delicious Salone and continental dishes from her nicknamed Palampo Pantry. While practicing social distancing for the past month, The Fat Bastard SL has channeled her energy into making beautifully gourmet dishes from her abode and has taken us on this food journey with her. Disclaimer; for fasters her posts are not for the weak stomached! I would advise you wait to break your fast to watch her posts, but if you are strong willed check out her pages for recipe inspirations!
Thinking of learning how to make a new dish, whether it is Salone, Ghanaian, Indian or Hungarian? The world is your oyster! Make a new dish and share the recipe! Please feel free to post a picture and share with me on either Twitter or Instagram at @minabilkis, and if you're feeling generous you are MORE than welcome to bring a dish for me. I'm also fasting! 😉
Instagram Live 📱
"Catch flights, not feelings" - Globetrotters R Us
Trigger alert! ⚠️
Since we are grounded till further notice, why not talk about what we are all experiencing for those of us in the digital travel community?
TravelEatSlay; an apparel and travel community collective will be hosting a talk on Instagram Live entitled COVID-19 More Than Just Missed Flights It's A New Norm on Sunday, May 10 2020 at 2pm GMT on their Instagram page @TravelEatSlay.
Want to learn more about travel when it's time to fly out? Don't miss this Instagram live on May 10!
4. Scrabble GO! 🔤
Anyone up for Scrabble?
I have been whooping butt in Scrabble Go and I am looking to whoop some more! 😉
The beloved boardgame Scrabble; adapted as Scrabble Go is available on your device to play with friends, family and complete strangers from the internet! It is available on both iOS and Android devices, check out more on their website or download directly from your App or Play Store.
You can challenge me at Mina Bilkis. I look forward to defeating you 😈 ...but please in the event that you beat me 👀, keep that on the downlow, abeg. No vex. Allow me to flex. 🌑
5. Ted Talk 💻
Feeling uninspired or lacking motivation? Why not watch a Ted Talk?
TED is a nonprofit devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short and powerful talks of 18 minutes or less. TED began in 1984 as a conference where Technology, Entertainment and Design converged, and today covers almost all topics from science to business to global issues in more than 100 languages. Meanwhile, independently run TEDx events help share ideas in communities around the world.
Who knows, maybe one day you'll give a Ted Talk or a Tedx Talk!
I was once privileged to deliver a Tedx Talk organized by TEDxYouth@Kingtom in July 2018 in Freetown. Under the theme Triggering Potentials, my Tedx Talk entitled Creating Safe Spaces in the Global South is available on my website and on the Official Tedx Youtube page here.
Did you know Menstrual Hygiene Day exists? Oh yes, it does! 🩸 May 28 every year!
Menstrual Hygiene Day falls on the 28th day of the fifth month of the year (May) to denote the average menstrual cycle (28 days) and the average length a period lasts for (5 days).
Menstrual Hygiene Day raises awareness of the different levels of Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM) practices (and lack thereof) throughout the world in urban, rural, displaced and conflict communities for menstruators. It further seeks to encourage global advocacy to end the stigma and taboo around a natural biological process a girl, adolescent, woman, transman or non-binary person experiences. Without periods we won't be here, so why stigmatize it?
This year's theme is Periods Don't Stop For Pandemics, Neither Will We.
Take this day (or month) to learn more about great organizations in Sierra Leone and worldwide that are working in Menstrual Hygiene Management and are linked to several of the Sustainable Development Goals 2030 (SDGs) such as SDG 3 Good Health and Wellbeing, SDG 4 Quality Education, SDG 5 Gender Equality, SDG 6 Clean Water and Sanitation, SDG 8 Decent Work and Economic Growth and SDG 12 Responsible Consumption and Growth.
On May 28 consider following the conversation online at #MenstruationMatters, reading more about organization that work in MHM and/or donating to an organization.
7. Sleep 😴
Yup, you read that correctly: sleep.
With people becoming COVID-19 self-acclaimed experts, analysts and researchers overnight, the excess information, misinformation and disinformation we receive is incredibly exhausting which contributes to anxiety, fear, emotional and mental fatigue and more.
If you're feeling overwhelmed, stressed and/or anxious during this time take some time for YOU and schedule sleeping time if you're not on a sleeping schedule to help you focus better, reduce your anxiety levels and thinking clearer. Prioritize your screen time, filter keywords you would prefer to not come up during your downtime, go for a walk around your house or do at home exercise workouts but attend to your sleep schedule to prevent aggravating your anxiety which can lead to lucid or COVID-19 dreams that many have opened up to online.
SLEEP. IS. SELF-CARE.
And that's it for this month! Which activity or activities will you be doing? Feel free to share with me in the comments.
Please continue to adhere to your government's laws during this time. Be safe and be smart.
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ergo sum cogito