Health, Safety and Environment (HSE) also known as SHE (Safety, Health and Environment) are like a three in one package.
Rarely do you have one without the other and a time such as this shows the importance of having the three in our daily lives.
For those that have done HSE courses, they tell you during the classes that HSE involves observing health and safety rules and regulations along with protecting the environment.
Most times people attribute HSE to only workplaces or large gatherings such as stadiums, places of worship or academic institutions but it is so much more than that.
HSE should be applied in our houses, in our day to day lives; every detail of our lives is linked to HSE some way or another. Based on what is going on around the globe, it is important we know our roles and responsibilities in HSE even as we stay safe at home.
Like I said in my previous article https://www.bellanaija.com/2020/03/adefolake-adekola-you-are-only-as-wealthy-as-the-status-of-your-health/
Health is Wealth. During this period it is important we ensure we eat foods recommended by health practitioners and nutritionist that boost the immune system.
Ginger, garlic, lemon, fruits and vegetables are known to be good immune system boosters and adding them to our diet will greatly help.
A lot of people have called me or sent messages sharing concerns about gaining so much weight this period. Here is what I will say:
Try as much as possible not to overeat. Drink water before your meal to reduce the portion you will have. If possible, measure the calories of the meals you have and ensure it is within the acceptable limit for someone trying to maintain a certain weight.
Do home-based exercise such as dumbbell exercises and brisk-walks within your compound (alone). Most importantly, keep busy (write, read, watch movies, research, create a website, start an online course, bond with family)
It prevents us from feasting on junks or eating unnecessarily. Sleep, at least when you are asleep you cannot eat.
Now more than ever, everyone understands the importance of safety measures health practitioners have always told us to take but we assumed they were being overly finicky.
Little details like washing your hands after touching the railings on a staircase https://www.bellanaija.com/2019/12/adefolake-adekola-before-you-touch-touch-touch-think-about-the-bacteria/ or counting money http://bellanaija.com/2018/08/adefolake-adekola-naira-bacteria-fungi/will make a lot of sense now.
Cleaning your nose with a toilet paper rather than picking it would not be questioned anymore. Just few days ago, a video circulating on the internet showed a man bringing oranges from a gutter in Agungi, Lagos state, claiming it preserves the fruits.
When they say, “thoroughly wash your fruits before eating” Nigerians say, “Diseases no dey kill African man”. Well, Covid-19 has killed thousands of African men. Staying at home or wearing masks and gloves is not just a precautionary measure but a necessary measure.
Even whilst at home especially for families with kids as well, there are safety measures that we should take to ensure when this pandemic is over; we all return to our daily lives.
- Avoid leaving water on the floor
- Prevent poor body positioning
- Remove obstructions from pathways
- Keep a close eye on your child
- Working smoke alarms
- Lock away hand tools
- Have a first aid box (you do not want to overburden the doctors with a first aid problem at this time).
A lot of times people usually think the environment is the least of our problem but I totally disagree. Take for example, if we took better care of our environment years ago; the weather will not be as hot as it is now and will make this stay at home a bit more enjoyable.
There are so many ways we can look after our environment right there at home. I agree it might not change much but the little impact it has will one day make a bigger impact that will benefit us all.
- Save water: There are places in Nigeria that they dig the soil to access water to drink and I do not mean borehole, I mean they dig and drink the brown water because that is their only source of water. You reading this article is opportune to have access to clean water, so please do not waste it.
- Food wastage: Panic buying! That seems to be what is in vogue and people are buying food items they have never eaten before just because they do not want to run out of food. Remember, that money used to buy what you will not eat and later throw away can be saved; as the economy of countries seem to be taken massive hits right now. Better still, leave the food for someone that needs it. Now is not the time to waste food but to save. https://www.bellanaija.com/2018/11/wastage-food-implications/
- Plant trees: I know we are asked to stay at home but we are allowed to come outside for fresh air every once in awhile alone within our compound or vicinity. Therefore, we can as well use the opportunity to plant trees. The fruits we are currently consuming can become a big fruit tree in the nearest future. Trust me, ask my mum that is enjoying her avocado fruits after seven years of waiting. By planting trees you are contributing in your own major way to the environment.
- Waste Separation: I have friends that cannot stay at home because their recycling company has to deliver plastic to companies providing essential services. Due to lack of proper waste separation, it takes them more money and time to separate plastics https://www.bellanaija.com/2017/10/adefolake-adekola-eradicating-plastic-pollution-nigeria/ from organic waste etc. We are usually in a hurry to go to our offices but now we have no place to go, what better time to start separating your home waste.
- Do not print: For those working from home, please do not print if you don’t have too. We use about 10 litres of water to get a single white A4 paper https://www.bellanaija.com/2017/09/adefolake-adekola-2/ .
- Save energy: This is particularly for Nigerians in Nigeria. For those abroad, they know not to leave the light or electrical appliances on because bills be piling up. But for us here, we are quite relaxed because we claim the light is not stable so why not leave it on. One major reason for switching off electrical appliances when not in use is to prevent possible fire outbreaks. But that aside, we should switch off lights and sockets when not in use because a lot of modern appliances go into standby mode thereby costing us more but we should also switch them off to save the environment.
It is our collective responsibility to make good decisions this period that ultimately affect our health, safety and the environment. Stay home and stay safe!