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Table 1 Assorted responses from the interviewees illustrating the main contextual factors influencing their routine performance

From: Community-owned resource persons for malaria vector control: enabling factors and challenges in an operational programme in Dar es Salaam, United Republic of Tanzania



Ward & Municipal Supervisors

Community relations

I encounter problems entering some of these houses. For example, here lives a white man, he keeps snakes and dogs. I have not been able to go in because the security guards had advised me not to, even though I can see from here that there is a swimming pool and tires but I could not do anything. Maybe the project leaders should assist us in educating these people because I have shared this with my supervisor but she could not help me.

Sometimes you get to a fenced house so you knock at the gate. First comes the house girl and she asks what you want. You explain that you need to go inside to look for breeding places and she might tell you just wait. So you stand there waiting for minutes. Then a boy comes and he asks you to explain again. If you are lucky they will let you in, otherwise you will be told the house owners are not here so come later or tomorrow. This takes a lot of time, so sometimes we do not bother to go there.

For me as a supervisor, I find it easy to work here because I belong to this ward and I am a member of the environmental committee, so I have no problem working with people. (Ward Supervisor)

Some of the CORPs they have had previous experiences, with UNICEF or other projects, so they know how to approach people and inform them. Others are inexperienced and the moment they run into problems, they stop the work and give up (Municipal Coordinator)

Views on UMCP work

We are responsible for the project - we are working all day out in the field. The supervisors are not out here in the field and they receive a far greater amount...if we were valued as part of the project, like the supervisors, it would make the job easier for us.

The work I do is hard, but it is a good project... I have come to know the community members. We are all hoping there will be more opportunities and we will continue to do this work.

The CORPs who work with us are very good, the problem is not many stay with us for long - it is very difficult work, they go and the training is lost. We need to be careful in our selection, ones that have experience and will have an easier time, it is no good when they come and go (Municipal Coordinator).

This project has worked best where the community is most involved. If we give power to the Mtaa leaders to select, coordinate and fund larval control it will be sustainable. (Municipal Coordinator)

Motivation to participate

I feel like this is the only way out for me, because at least I get assured of being paid at the end of the month...

I need at least some time off. I have to rest for at least a week and, at the same time, use that opportunity to meet my relatives. But the way things are, if I go on leave for just a day I will not be paid, and I do not want that to happen because I need that money.

This has been a good project and has made a large impact on the community. We are all thinking it should be continued, though we cannot be assured what will happen in the next years. We are now all working well together, we can only hope that the project is taken up permanently (Ward Supervisor).

Working conditions

I remember there was one CORP, who was working here, but he got sick and so for days he could not go to work. He was very sick but the project did nothing to help him until his relatives came to take him to their home. He unfortunately had to go for treatment. So even if you get sick, you still have to find a way to at least get to work so that you can get the money for that day, because we need money and the project has no budget for treatment.

I think being a supervisor is a tough job, because you not only have to look at your own work, but also make sure that even those under you are doing the right job There is so much to be done because I have to split my time between going to the field to see what they are doing and check the reports that I receive because I do not trust some of them. Now that we are applying the larvicide, it is even tougher because I have to check on the two teams and yet if you look at what we are being paid it is very little unlike our fellow inspectors [municipal level]. They do little but they get paid twice what we get. (Ward Supervisor).