Our impact, Their voices

Online training to improve prevention strategies against COVID-19

Restrictive measures against COVID-19 prevented SCORE Training from taking place as normal face-to-face. However, SCORE trainers were trained early in the use of e-learning and online tools, and used their newly acquired skills to innovate in continuing to deliver SCORE Training. In Zimbabwe, Calundike Exports was able to experience online training and took advantage of the new SCORE Training module - COVID-19 Safety & Health at Work - to put in place the most important measures to protect its employees and ensure business continuity.

Article | 21 April 2021

Company profile

Name of the enterprise 
Calundike Exports
Number of employees209 (17% women)
ProductsWooden Caskets and Coffins

Calundike Exports is a medium-sized company in Zimbabwe specialising in the manufacture of quality wooden products such as coffins. Like all export companies, its operations were severely disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic and for the company to take part in occupational health and safety training during COVID-19 was crucial. Not only did it ensure business continuity, but it also ensured higher morale among the company's staff. Greater knowledge of the disease and how it spreads allowed the most appropriate control measures to be implemented and made staff feel safe in their workplace.

Online training to ensure the safety of participants and help the company mitigate the negative effects of COVID-19

The company decided to participate in SCORE Training and to follow the COVID-19 Safety & Health at Work module first in order to be better prepared for the current uncertain business environment. During the two-day online training, 17 participants were able to learn and develop their knowledge to prepare the company as best they could for this difficult period and uncertainty.

Enterprise staff participating in SCORE Training online

From risk assessments to the establishment of an emergency response plan to the implementation of preventive measures against COVID-19, this SCORE Training module provided the essential elements to improve the company's ability to mitigate the negative impacts of COVID-19.

Awareness and control measures to mitigate the risks of spreading

Before taking part in SCORE Training, the enterprise had to deal with a lot of complacency among employees and very little consideration for COVID-19 control measures, such as wearing masks and using disinfectants. However, the participants quickly realised through SCORE Training the importance of raising awareness among the entire staff to ensure the effectiveness of the control measures. All staff then understood the importance of complying with the new rules to mitigate the risk of spreading the virus and being safe in the workplace.

Before SCORE Training Staff not observing physical distancing of minimum 1.5m apart After SCORE Training Staff queuing in the canteen following markings for physical distancing

The risk assessment enabled the company to put in place the right emergency plan that the company needed to prevent the spread of the virus and to reduce hazards in the workplace. In addition to greatly improved social distancing, mask-wearing and hand hygiene practices, several other measures were implemented in the company. Temperature controls were introduced at the entrances and a staggered lunch break plan was implemented to relieve congestion in the canteen area and ensure social distancing.

Social distancing measures implemented throughout the company

Strengthening control measures and communication: keys to combating COVID-19

All the measures put in place by the company allowed the employees to remain healthy and safe. The company did not report any cases of COVID-19 and was thus able to ensure the smooth continuation of its activities. SCORE Training in its virtual format provided the company with valuable advice at a time when it was most needed and helped its staff to better understand the importance of staying safe throughout the company. With awareness being one of the key improvement areas that the company's improvement team identified, SCORE Training also ensured that it helped the company to improve communication within their business. It now regularly communicates updated information on the COVID-19 situation to all its employees. SCORE Training in its virtual format has also inspired the company to adopt a similar approach to its meetings to ensure that the virus does not spread during face-to-face meetings.

All employees were committed to ensuring that the measures were respected, and the team effort ensured that people were no longer scared to go to work. Everyone learnt that with all the right measures in place and respected, and with good collaboration between staff members, and proper communication, the risks of cases in the company could be mitigated.

"My role in the maintenance department is to always make sure that we wear our masks and that everyone uses their bottle of disinfectant every time we change workstations and use another machine. We were afraid of COVID-19, but having this culture of wearing masks, disinfecting and maintaining physical distance gave us confidence that we could effectively reduce the risks."

Maintenance team member at Calundike Export