Forty students aged 7-14 and their teachers from the Ecole Francaise de Banjul recently visited MRC Unit The Gambia in Fajara on Wednesday 29th March 2017. The purpose of the visit was to provide the students with demonstrations of what they have been studying in their science classes.
The visit, which was jointly coordinated by Laboratory Services and the Communications Department, included demonstrations on both Malaria and Bacterial.
On arrival, the visitors were welcomed by Abdoulie Cham, Community Relations Officer, who gave the group a brief overview of The Unit and our community engagement activities. The group then watched The Unit video for a wider understanding of our research areas in The Gambia and beyond, which was followed by a question and answer session.
Simon Correa, Principal Laboratory Technician and Mamadou Bah, Senior Laboratory Technician, demonstrated hands-on practice with the microscope, including best practice in interpreting accurate results. They further explained the stages of plasmodium falciparum life cycle in the human and the mosquito and how the bite of an anopheles mosquito spreads malaria.
For the bacterial demonstration, Mamadou Jallow, Trainee Scientific Officer, explained bacterial transmission and how bacterial culture and antibiotic susceptibility testing is important for drug prescription. The students were also shown how bacteria with thick and thin cell walls can be differentiated (gram positive and gram negative bacteria) using the microscope.
During both sessions, the students asked many questions and were excited to view slides with malaria parasites and bacteria through the microscope. The students and teachers were grateful for the opportunity to visit The Unit as it provided them with a stimulating educational experience.