Health matters to artisanal mineworkers!
Financial support from the World Bank and the EGPS trust fund has enabled Health Focus to train change agents in the Kasai and Kivu provinces of the Democratic Republic of Congo to deliver health education messages to artisanal miners. Local partner organisations in the provinces are currently implementing field work and are attracting great interest in the mines. Topics range from community health concerns to occupational health issues such as the use of mercury in gold production or exposure to quartz dust which can lead to fatal miner's lung in the long term.
Formalization of artisanal mining should always include health aspects. Mutual health insurance could go a long way. Our modern age social protection systems date back to the first solidarity funds established by artisanal miners in Bohemia (Europe) in 1260.