In commemoration of the GIS Day, the African Women in GIS members were encouraged to share their GIS stories, so they could be celebrated and also to encourage GIS beginners that there is enough space for them to make exploits in the field.
With respect to this, Mahfuza Adamu Abubakar, an Urban Planner from Nigeria, was able to share with us how she uses GIS in her work and the exploits she has made with GIS. Mahfuza uses GIS to build databases for layout designs that have been generated overtime in Abuja, the federal capital city of Nigeria. Her department also has a research unit where environmental issues are identified and studied using GIS Tools.
She has also carried out projects utilizing the GIS tool, some of which include the spatial distribution of Automobile Workshops in Gombe Metropolis, Nigeria, Spatial Analysis of Neighbourhood Security in Karu Urban Area, Abuja and then expanded to mapping crime incidents, hotspots, pattern of distribution as to clustered, random or dispersed. She also worked on Covid 19 spread across Nigeria over an extended period of time, analyzing the effect on Nigeria's socio-economic well-being by producing relevant maps with GIS tools.
Also, she is currently volunteering as a GIS analyst for the Blessing Life Foundation where they created a mobile application, “YawaSOS”. This is an emergency response app which is location-based with about 1 to 3m accuracy for first respondent to pinpoint the exact location of a distress call.
Mahfuza explained that she loves GIS because of how effective it is for communication and its aid in decision making especially in the security, disaster and emergency management sectors because conceiving a crime free and sustainable environment is a big deal for her.
Lastly, she advised GIS enthusiasts not to feel intimidated or discouraged. Rather, they should focus on their goals and they will get there. There is also a need for them to identify their area of interest, do some research, equip themselves, acquire other relevant skills through training and short term courses and also embrace more practice as that is the key to perfection.
Independent consultant, Ketech Geo-ITAuthor
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