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The HQ Beat Vol. 1 No. 2

The HQ Beat Vol. 1 No. 2

COVIDHQ Editorial Squad

Hello and greetings from HQ.

In this edition of the Beat, we are keeping a vigilant eye on the new coronavirus variant rampaging in India and its spread beyond India's borders to other regions. Speaking of borders, there has been an emergence of vaccine tourism due to slow vaccine rollouts in many African countries, as evidenced by Zimbabwe welcoming foreign nationals to take the jab.

It also is Mental Health Awareness month—we have a cool animated mini-toolkit on HQ that you should definitely check out. Plus a jazz musician writes a powerful piece on how his creative process helped him deal with loss during the pandemic.


According to the World Health Organization, the coronavirus variant first discovered in India has spread to 44 countries. The variant has been detected in Kenya, Uganda, Morocco and South Africa among others. This new COVID variant of global concern spreads more easily and is having a devastating effect on India.

COVID variant first detected in India found in 44 countries: WHO
B.1.617 variant of virus found in samples uploaded to open-access database ‘from 44 countries in all six WHO regions’.

Get your tourist visa, and a jab. Zimbabwe is offering Covid-19 vaccines to foreign nationals at a reasonable cost, boosting the country's vaccine tourism. President Emmerson Mnangagwa said, "This is a human element, we cannot deny anybody the vaccine." Citizens continue to get the vaccine for free.

Vaccine tourism: South Africans cross border to Zimbabwe for Covid-19 jab
With a slow vaccine rollout in several African countries, travellers keen for the jab are visiting Zimbabwe where private clinics can administer it, at a ‘reasonable’ cost.

This animated three piece on HQ is part of our Mental Health Awareness month creative work this May. The animations are short yet powerful reminders that we all need to work on keeping our mental health on point. HQ is joining the rest of the world in highlighting the importance of accessibility to mental health tools and the eradication of the stigma of mental health.

You are not alone
May is Mental Health Awareness month. Covid-19 has had an impact on all of us, and developing the skills to cope with daily life is an important part of maintaining good mental health. Here are a few ways to do it.

Check out this opinion piece from Maji Hailemariam. Her experience when she went home to Addis Ababa during the pandemic after testing positive for COVID was an eye opener on the inadequacies of the health care systems in many African countries, and the concerns with wealthy nations hoarding vaccines.

Opinion: Africans Shouldn’t Have To Pull Strings To Get COVID Treatment
When Maji Hailemariam and her dad got sick with COVID in Ethiopia, she was frustrated by how difficult it was to get tested and treated. She urges governments that it doesn’t have to be that way.

All that jazz and more. Take a listen and also watch Jazz musician Bokani Dyer talk about his creative process and how he used it to deal with his brother's passing during a time when the whole world was experiencing uncertainty and profound loss.

A high note in a low moment
Composer and jazz musician, Bokani Dyer, created ‘Kelenosi’ the album that defined his aloneness during lockdown.

If you enjoyed this, you can find more videos on the COVID HQ Africa YouTube channel, which is live and can be found here.

Beat Pic of The Week—The Hustle

The weight of the daily hustle is borne by the resilient. Photo by Felix Odihambo