VL Zambia’s First Female Pump Technicians

This week’s Fist Bump goes out to VectorLink Zambia’s first three female Spray Pump Technicians and to Gender Focal Point Mary Malasa and the team for facilitating their recruitment. In Zambia, as in many countries, some IRS roles are seen as exclusive to men. One such job is the Spray Pump Technician, who ensures that the compression sprayers used by spray operators are well-maintained throughout the campaign. The technician also troubleshoots challenges as they arise during field operations. 

VectorLink Zambia introduced the role of Spray Pump Technicians during the 2020 campaign. Though the campaign ran more smoothly as a result, all 20 pump technicians engaged were men. The VectorLink team and particularly its Gender Focal Point, Mary Malasa, saw the challenge and set to addressing it.

Prior to the 2021 campaign recruitment, Mary contacted and collaborated with community leaders through the District Health Promotion Officers, encouraging females to apply for all roles, including Spray Pump Technicians. Maureen Mulama, a 28-year-old clinical officer from Katete District, noticed that a lot of people were applying for the usual positions of Team Leaders and Spray Operators, but few people seemed interested in the Pump Technician role, and decided to apply. 

I continued to research and watched videos of pump maintenance which motivated me more as I am someone who likes challenging roles and always wants to do new things,” she said.

Maureen is one of three female Pump Technicians who will work on the campaign this year. She is joined by Kendy Njobvu (pictured top right) and Catherine Tembo, both based in Chipata District.

Best of luck to these three trailblazers and the entire VectorLink Zambia team as they count down to the start of their campaign in late September. May these three female Pump Technicians be the first of many.

Congratulations, VL Zambia for going the extra mile!