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Community-Based Adaptation to Climate Change

Author: 
Hannah Reid, ed.
Mozaharul Alam, ed.
Rachel Berger, ed.
Terry Cannon, ed.
Angela Milligan, ed.
December 1, 2009
Affiliation: 

International Institute for Environment and Development (Reid, Cannon, Milligan), United Nations Environment Programme (Alam), Practical Action (Berger)

This special issue in English and Arabic of Participatory Learning and Action focuses on recent approaches to climate change adaptation which are both participatory and community-based adapt

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Kivulini Women's Rights Organisation

Kivulini was established in 1999 by six women who felt compelled to respond to the needs of women experiencing domestic violence in the city of Mwanza in Tanzania. The organisation seeks to address the root causes of domestic violence by working closely with community members and leaders to change attitudes and behaviours that perpetuate violence against women. In Swahili, Kivulini means "in the shade/shelter" and is intended to imply a safe place where women, men, and children feel supported.

Communication Strategies: 

Kivulini seeks to focus on prevention rather than on service provision. This includes raising awareness both on the causes and consequences of domestic violence and working to address violence before it happens by changing the attitudes and behaviours that perpetuate violence against women. Kivulini does not highlight women for special attention; rather, they consider domestic violence to be a community problem. Thus, the approach is designed to bring communities together and emphasising the benefits of preventing domestic violence rather than focussing on blame.

Kivulini works to mobilise communities to prevent violence against women and girls and change social norms and behaviours that promote gender violence. The organisation has extensive roots within the community in Mwanza including a network of over 20 community-based groups and about 200 community volunteers who conduct community awareness and education sessions on domestic violence. Community volunteers engage their constituents to challenge traditional norms and customs that encourage gender-based violence. They also support and counsel victims of violence, referring them to human rights organisations, hospitals, courts, and ward tribunals.

A community assessment was done at the outset of Kivulini's work. The participatory action research involved over 400 community members and leaders of all ages to learn more about perceptions about domestic violence, its causes, consequences, and occurrences. The information and perspectives learned through the research informed the development and emphasis of all Kivulini programmes. The organisation has several key strategic programme areas:

  • Advocacy - At the grassroots, advocacy is done within the existing community infrastructure to advocate for change on structures, protocols, and policies that are detrimental to women and impede their access to rights. This includes work with local government, street leaders, and Sungu Sungu (informal community policing), who are often the first level of response to women experiencing violence.
  • Networking - Kivulini collaborates with other organisations to support national campaigns that lobby for positive change on issues related to women's rights and violence against women. Participating in local network meetings on gender, women, health, and children is a way to share information, build coalitions, and increase support on issues of interest.
  • Community Awareness - Through community awareness activities Kivulini works to inspire and organise communities to take action to prevent violence against women. This programme is designed to change attitudes and behaviours in the community to create an environment that is supportive of women's rights, particularly women's right to live free of violence. Participatory activities in this programme include: two-hour educational sessions on women's rights, domestic violence, HIV/AIDS, reproductive health, environmental health, life skills, gender, human rights, etc.; educational video shows; community dialogues; theatre performances; songs and traditional Ngoma performances; and festivals.
  • Capacity Building - This programme works to build capacity of community members, partners, and staff. It includes a series of training of trainers workshops, seminars, and on-site work visits with Ward Executive Officers, the Sungu Sungu, and religious leaders.
  • Media/Learning Materials - through print and electronic media, the organisation works to promote discussion and public debate about domestic violence, human rights, health, HIV/AIDS, and other relevant issues. This department also engages journalists and the media in an analysis of how women are portrayed in the media. A media checklist has been developed for various journalists in the Mwanza region to help analyse stories they write about violence against women. In addition, large scale colourful murals depicting issues of family harmony are positioned in strategic areas around Mwanza city viewed by people on a daily basis to stimulate and engage community members in dialogue to help redefine cultural beliefs and accepted behaviours in the community.
  • Legal Aid - Trained counsellors are available on a daily basis. They provide referrals to health care centres, the police, or social welfare if necessary and counsellors often accompany clients to provide support and help them negotiate often-unfriendly environments. Another component of this programme are legal literacy sessions conducted with institutions and community groups on human rights.
Development Issues: 

Gender-based violence, Rights

Partner Text: 

The McKnight Foundation; Canadian International Development Agency, Tanzania; Embassy of Finland, Tanzania; HIVOS; Youth Challenge International, USA & Canada; Interteam, Switzerland; and Rapid Funding Envelope for HIV/AIDS, Tanzania

Contact Information: 
Source: 

Performing Arts for Behavior and Social Change

Subtitle: 
Summary of Sharing Session of Creative Communication on 8 April 2010
April 8, 2010

This summary report describes the second round of a United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) sharing session on creative communication under the theme "performing arts for behavior and social change".

Source: 

Email from Keisuke Taketani to The Communication Initiative on April 21 2010.

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Incorporating Male Gender Norms into Family Planning and Reproductive Health Programs

Subtitle: 
Program Guidance Brief
November 1, 2009

This brief is intended to provide family planning and reproductive health (FP/RH) programme planners and implementers with suggestions for how to incorporate activities that address male gender nor

Contact Information: 
Source: 

Email from Sandra Kalscheur to The Communication Initiative on November 6 2009 and January 5 2010.

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Phukusi la Moyo (Bag of Life)

Created in March 2009, Phukusi la Moyo (Bag of Life) is a radio programme that focuses on mother and child health in Malawi. It is designed to deliver learning content to a geographically dispersed audience and relies on a network of trained women's listening groups who are involved in all aspects of programming and which covers approximately 350 villages and a total population of 80,000 people across the entire district.

Communication Strategies: 

Phukusi la Moyo is a weekly 30-minute mother and child health radio show broadcast by Mudzi Wathu Community Radio in Mchinji District. According to the producers, it was developed in response to a need for education about maternal and child health in Mchinji District.

One of the programme's objectives is to move beyond "messaging" and a one-way "pushing content" approach towards more interactive and engaged models for local educational programming. Training for existing women's groups draws on the experience of both Mudzi Wathu radio and MaiMwana Project. Three representatives from each of the 200 groups are being trained in the skills necessary to facilitate: discussions about the programmes; the application of what women are learning to their own situations; and group-based learning activities and skills development. The groups were established by MaiMwana in 2005 and have been engaging in a community mobilisation action cycle in relation to mother and child health. This has involved meeting on a regular basis to:

  • identify mother and child health problems;
  • explore the causes of these problems and the ways to prevent and manage them;
  • develop locally feasible strategies to address these problems;
  • implement these strategies; and
  • evaluate the results of these strategies on mother and child health.

Two representatives from Mudzi Wathu Community Radio Station, two from the District Hospital, two from MaiMwana Project, and three from communities in Mchinji participated in the workshop, which was supported financially by the Commonwealth of Learning with major in-kind contributions from all parties. The workshop stimulated the development of the following:

  • a list of maternal and child health issues on which to focus the programme's core messages;
  • a message matrix listing, in relation to each identified issue: 1) negative behaviours/practices; 2) possible consequences of the negative behaviours; 3) positive/expected behaviours; and 4) the benefits of practicing the positive/expected behaviours;
  • a programme matrix listing each programme in the series, including: the theme or the issue under discussion, the communication objectives (expected outcomes), the intended audience, and likely interviewees;
  • a format for the programme - in this case, a magazine featuring interviews, debates, vox pops (voice of the people), drama, listeners' letters, quizzes, poetry, and human interest stories;
  • a set of programme success factors, including the roles and responsibilities of each partner; and
  • a strategy for the role of listening groups in the programme.

The Phukusi la Moyo programme is designed to allow community members to participate in all aspects of the programme. The programmes include field recording and live interaction. Organisers say that the programme is participatory in design and draws on local voices together with local and national knowledge organisations for the formulation and contextualisation of learning objectives. Building on MaiMwana Project's community-based approach, the organisation say there is already a sense of ownership for the programme among the communities, which arises from their engagement in the process.

Envisioned to run for about three years, the programme incorporates off-air elements and complementary media for learner support. Community activities are facilitated by trained local women who use visual aids such as picture cards and participatory rural appraisal (PRA) methods to stimulate discussions.

Development Issues: 

Children, Maternal Health

Key Points: 

Malawi's maternal and child mortality rates are amongst the highest in the world. In Malawi, only about half (57%) of women deliver in a health facility, only 57% of women attend the recommended four antenatal care sessions, and only one-third (31%) of women and children receive postnatal care.

The decision to use community radio came out of the lessons learned from MaiMwana Project's first five years working in Mchinji district and the explicitly expressed needs of women in Mchinji for more information and education about mother and child health issues. Data suggest that there is potential for 80% of households in Mchinji District to listen to Phukusi la Moyo. In parallel to this coverage of individual households, the MaiMwana Project aims to scale up the number of groups/listening clubs in Mchinji gradually over the next few years, with approximately 500 groups running by early 2010 (covering half the district) and approximately 1,000 groups by early 2011 (covering the entire district).

Partner Text: 

MaiMwana Project, Mudzi Wathu Community Radio station, Story Workshop, Commonwealth of Learning

Source: 

Email from Sarah Ball to Soul Beat Africa on June 16 2009; and Wikieducator website on June 25 2009 and May 6 2010.

Agricultural Employers Association (AEA) HIV/AIDS Awareness Theatre

From February 2009 to early 2010, the industrial theatre group Quiet Storm worked to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS through drama among farm workers, employers, and rural communities in Namibia.

Communication Strategies: 

Quiet Storm travelled to various farms and small towns across Namibia to perform the HIV/AIDS awareness play. Most of the performances coincided with information days for farm employees, during which various speakers conveyed farming information. The AEA management also urged employers on farms close to where the performances were taking place to give their employees the opportunity to attend these performances. The content of the performance covered safety in the work place, the importance of getting tested and knowing one's status, and how to live a healthy, positive life with HIV. In May 2009, the theatre group concluded their second roadshow in the southern part of Namibia.

According to the organisers, the theatre strategy was developed following the establishment of AEA's HIV/AIDS policy in 2005, which commits the Association and its members to participate in projects and programmes to help to curb the spread of HIV/AIDS. According to AEA, the Association's goal is to provide information to farmers and other employees who do not have access to HIV/AIDS information because they are far removed from the majority of the population. PharmAccess conducted a survey among AEA members in 2007 to examine the accessibility of health care and HIV/AIDS awareness, and the play is a response to the findings in the survey.

January 2010 update: A DVD of the HIV/AIDS awareness play, "lig deur die kraak", was produced and launched in June 2009. Organisers state that the DVD and its story line were so popular that a radio production (in 4 local languages) was also produced. The first broadcast took place in December 2009 on various NBC radio stations; the re-broadcasts are scheduled to take place in February 2010.

The industrial theatre performed for the last time in the first quarter of 2010. However, the DVD, "lig deur die kraak", is being distributed by the Agricultural Employers Association to their members as well as other interested parties to make sure that the message continues to be spread as wide as possible.

Development Issues: 

HIV/AIDS.

Key Points: 

PharmAccess Foundation (PharmAccess) is a Dutch not-for-profit organisation dedicated to strengthening health systems in sub-Saharan Africa. As part of its work, PharmAccess supports HIV/AIDS workplace programmes, providing prevention and confidential HIV/AIDS treatment for employees and dependents.

Partner Text: 

PharmAccess, Namibia Agricultural Union (NAU), and Quiet Storm. HIVOS, a Dutch humanitarian organisation, funds all the PharmAccess Commercial Farmers projects in Namibia (including the DVD and radio productions). Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) and German Development Service (DED) also came on board with technical and financial assistance for the production of the DVD and the radio productions.

Source: 

New Era website and Kaiser Network website on May 26 2009; PharmAccess website, January 22 2010; and emails from Rina Hough to The Communication Initiative on January 26 2010 and January 27 2010 and to Soul Beat Africa on August 2 2010.

Story Workshop Educational Trust

Founded in 1996 by American artist and educator Pamela Brooke, Story Workshop Educational Trust is a media organisation bringing social change communication together with creative entertainment in an effort to improve the everyday lives of people in Malawi, Africa. Story Workshop uses media and personal contact to reach Malawians on issues that include food security, health and HIV/AIDS, environmental protection, human rights and democracy, and gender.
Communication Strategies: 

Story Workshop uses the strategy of "edutainment" for social change, drawing on radio shows, village theatre, printed materials, music, training/capacity building, and community dialogue. The organisation uses these communication tools to tell stories that are based on the real lives of people and to facilitate community mobilisation. The strategy involves not simply conveying messages but, rather, facilitating communication among people - based on the belief that listening to people's problems and the obstacles they are confronted with is the most effective strategy for helping Malawians improve their lives.

Specific programmes and strategies are described on the Story Workshop website. However, in short, the organisation designs:

  • Radio programmes - soap operas, radio magazines, debates, and short programmes and jingles - which take a number of formats, depending on audience and message (the goal is to ensure that information fits the social context of a community). The organisation's first project was a radio soap opera about family health, funded by UNICEF, called Zimachitika. To cite only one more recent example of a Story Workshop programme,Mutu Umodzi Susenza Denga: Rural Development Communications Campaign Debates was launched in August 2004 to generate dialogue on controversial issues and air possible solutions through monthly policy and advocacy panel debates.
  • Printed material - comic books, booklets, low-literacy prints, and Journalism Competitions. The latter are designed to increase the incentive for public coverage of the above-described radio debates by awarding prizes to journalists who most effectively put a "human face" on the issues raised in the debates through their investigative reporting and creative feature writing skills. To support this process, Story Workshop organises research field trips for journalists.
  • Theatre - participatory village action theatre drawing on oral tradition. Plays take place in the villages where audiences live, incorporating local residents into the performances themselves. The performances have reportedly resulted in house paintings, fabric banners, local dramas, poems, songs and dances illustrating "do" and "don't" behaviours.
  • Music Story Workshop uses music as a vehicle to motivate people to move (physically and emotionally), as well as to facilitate such local productions as Tingathe!, a celebrity compilation focused on raising awareness of violence against women.
  • Community dialogue - Story Workshop incorporates field research and structured community dialogue in an effort to ensure that Malawians do not simply consume messages - but discuss, debate, and put them into action. Activties include radio listener clubs, action research, and radio research gardens. The latter approach is carried out in conjunction with Mwana Alirenji, Story Workshop's farmer-to-farmer radio magazine. Groups of farmers collectively experiment with innovative approaches to agricultural challenges, then report on their experiences to other farmers through the radio shows. In this way, knowledge is transferred from to farmer through peer-to-peer learning.
  • Training and capacity-building - for example, Story Workshop has offered AIDS-awareness messaging training for the Malawi Network of AIDS Services Organizations (MANASO).
Development Issues: 

Health, Family Planning, Women, Girls' Education, Rights, Economic and Political Development, HIV/AIDS, Gender, Natural Resource Management.

Key Points: 

Visit Story Workshop's Listen-and-Look Interactive Studio to experience their radio and print work, and visit their photo gallery to see Story Workshop in action in Malawi.

Partner Text: 

Various activities have been funded by various organisations including UNICEF, European Commission, UNDP, the Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa (OSISA), Population Communications International (PCI), USAID, UNAIDS and UNFPA.

Source: 

Letter from Pamela Brooke to The Communication Initiative; email from Janie Hayes to The Communication Initiative on September 19 2006; and Story Workshop Educational Trust website.

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SURVEY: Knowledge and Networking Needs and Practices of People Engaged in Local, National, and International Development – 2014

Please take the SURVEY: Knowledge and Networking Needs and Practices of People Engaged in Local, National, and International Development – 2014 – the more people in the network who complete this survey, the better the data produced.

Clicking here will take you to the survey...

Featured

"Routine immunization creates opportunities to educate parents about the benefits of vaccines and other health services. Engaging the community in planning, financing, and delivering the program can increase equity and build trust in the government's ability to deliver immunizations."

"Unpredictable, unexpected events happen - frequently they are marked by uncertainty, confusion and a sense of urgency. Such events can lead to lack of trust - in organizations, people or immunization services. Having a pre-prepared communications plan in place can help minimize the potentially negative impact of such events."

"We hope that this will be a useful complement to the range of other communication tools and templates available to support the introduction of IPV."

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Research and Strategy

"The traditional leaders were the most successful in positively influencing the decision to vaccinate."

"It is clear that the level of political commitment, the extent of engagement of regional and local leaders, the quality of public health leadership and management, and the involvement of civil society are totally inadequate. Pakistan puts the entire global goal in jeopardy."

This paper describes a cross-sectional study conducted to assess the impact of social mobilisation on families in Aligarh, India who are resistant to giving polio drops to their children. Considering that there is a history of Muslim resistance to the oral polio vaccine (OPV) due to mistrust and rumour, it was deemed significant that the...

"How can we build health communication and other capacity in disadvantaged settings?"

"What are some of the communication challenges in engaging people on polio immunization issues?"

This is one of the questions asked in this interview of Thomas Abraham, MA, who is affiliated with the Journalism and Media Studies Center (JMSC) at The University of Hong Kong and who is a consultant for the World Health...

"The usefulness of household visitation as a strategy to improving coverage of routine polio vaccination, one of the four pillars of the global polio eradication strategy, has not been documented previously."

Recognising that strengthening routine immunisation (RI) is one of the 4 prongs of the Global Polio Eradication...

"Polio eradication's surveillance, communications, and service delivery systems were unmatched in terms of combining quality with reach....Applying the resolve and dedication that characterizes polio eradication to a wider suite of services could provide communities with the services they are demanding, give workers a fresh reason for...

The authors of the more than 60 articles in this supplement to The Journal of Infectious Diseases reflect on the tools, tactics, and alliances that the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) partners have undertaken as part of the effort to combat the international spread of wild polioviruses into previously polio-free countries...

This is the second of two reports (see Related Summaries, below) in response to the circulation of wild poliovirus (WPV) in October 2013 after a 15-year absence.

"As the newly elected government establishes itself, it is critical that the national commitment to achieving polio eradication is maintained at the highest level."

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Experiences

Dhibcaha Nolosha (Drops for Life) is a radio show that aims to improve understanding about polio and challenge negative attitudes towards vaccination. Created in response to a polio outbreak in Somalia that started in May 2013 (a country with no outbreaks in the previous 6 years), the 15-minute magazine show is broadcast on the BBC...

"Hundreds of Pakistani labourers have been shown a short film that hopes to show them the importance of polio vaccinations."

Image Nation Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emerites (UAE), developed a film- and radio-based campaign running from June to September 2014 in an effort to create strong awareness about polio and polio vaccination...

"Child health records help ensure every child receives the vaccines they need to live a healthy and productive life. However, many health records are lost or destroyed, not accurately maintained, or are simply too confusing to read."

"[Y]outh's productive engagement in the polio/RI programme will provide it with a source of continued dynamism and productive energy. This is especially so as the Polio Eradication programme is transcending into a crucial phase, as for over three years no wild polio transmission is reported in the country (India), whereas the associated '...

"Public radio show games conducted in local languages for the communities by the communities is the approach likely to promote lasting change and to support communication activities in immunization and polio eradication. Such programmes increase participation, community ownership..." - Bruno Maes, United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)...

"On the morning of 8 November, scores of Syrian refugee children at the Omariya informal settlement in east Lebanon held a joyful demonstration amongst the tents in their camp. Accompanied by social worker from the Lebanese NGO [non-governmental organisation] Beyond, they held colourful placards with the word 'polio' in Arabic crossed out,...

As carried out in Nigeria, from early 2007 to mid-2009, IMMUNIZATIONbasics (IMMbasics) worked with government agencies at all levels (Federal, State, and Local Government Area (LGA) levels) and international partners in Bauchi and Sokoto states, with a focus on developing the human and organisational capacity needed to strengthen delivery of...

The NSEWA Project (which is a contraction of North-South-East-West Africa) is working to close the gap between health services and road safety through specially designed driver safety training and health-related programmes directed at the Road Freight Industry. Led by North Star Alliance and Fleet Forum, the NSEWA training and certificate...

The Soul City Institute for Health and Development Communication and their partners in Namibia, Malawi, Zambia, and Zimbabwe are working to intensify cross border social and behaviour change communication (SBCC) interventions with a particular focus on high risk groups such as sexworkers, truckers, and migrant populations. The project involves...

Media's pH (Public Health) Value

This initiative, launched in India by Newslaundry in partnership with Who’s There? Yes (WTY), a global journalism and health mentoring initiative of Chitra Subramaniam Duella and Franklin Apfel, is intended to inspire public debate in India on health issues starting with tobacco control. It was timed for debate during the lead up to the Delhi...

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Publications

"Clearly, this partnership between countries and sharing of expertise and know-how can go a long way to eradicating polio globally."

This online resource includes polio communication resources developed by the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and CORE, who started working together in India in 2003 as the Social Mobilization Network (SM Net) to provide concentrated support for immunisation in high-risk areas (HRAs) of Uttar Pradesh (UP). Working in 12 districts of UP...

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Communication Reviews

"Public awareness was the key for the success we had - in the schools, the mosques - but now keeping polio-free is more important than becoming polio-free." - Governor of Kandahar, Afghanistan

"I have had the very real privilege of being involved in the Global Polio Eradication initiative (GPEI) for the past 7 or 8 years. My vantage point has been somewhat unique as someone who sits outside the main implementing organisations but has nevertheless had an opportunity to see the programme close up."

"The Afghanistan polio programme continues to work in extraordinary circumstances and in an environment that is not only physically dangerous but also fluid and extremely challenging to manage."

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Community Participation

"Routine immunization creates opportunities to educate parents about the benefits of vaccines and other health services. Engaging the community in planning, financing, and delivering the program can increase equity and build trust in the government's ability to deliver immunizations."

This training manual, from the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), has been designed for use in trainings to increase interpersonal communication skills (IPC) and knowledge related to inactivated polio vaccine (IPV) for social mobilisers and frontline health workers. It was developed to facilitate group health education with the help of...

"How can we build health communication and other capacity in disadvantaged settings?"

"What are some of the communication challenges in engaging people on polio immunization issues?"

This is one of the questions asked in this interview of Thomas Abraham, MA, who is affiliated with the Journalism and Media Studies Center (JMSC) at The University of Hong Kong and who is a consultant for the World Health...

"Polio eradication's surveillance, communications, and service delivery systems were unmatched in terms of combining quality with reach....Applying the resolve and dedication that characterizes polio eradication to a wider suite of services could provide communities with the services they are demanding, give workers a fresh reason for...

The authors of the more than 60 articles in this supplement to The Journal of Infectious Diseases reflect on the tools, tactics, and alliances that the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) partners have undertaken as part of the effort to combat the international spread of wild polioviruses into previously polio-free countries...

Author: Heidi J Larson, PhD, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and Dept. Global Health, University of Washington, September 5 2014 - The myriad of challenges contributing to the persisting spread of Ebola in West Africa - the biggest Ebola outbreak since the viral haemorrhagic fever was discovered in 1976 - echo some of the...

"As the newly elected government establishes itself, it is critical that the national commitment to achieving polio eradication is maintained at the highest level."

"The Technical Advisory Group on Polio Eradication for Pakistan (TAG) conducted a meeting on 2-3 June 2014, during a time when the Pakistan programme is at a 'critical crossroads'....In the four months preceding the meeting, 86% of global polio cases were in Pakistan."

From the World Health Organization (WHO), Regional Office...

"The engagement of the traditional and religious leaders in the polio immunization campaign in northern Nigeria was vital to the success of the country's PEI and primary health care programs. The recent extension of the campaign to include polio survivors, Quranic school teachers, and entertainers, among others, is providing access to...

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Advocacy

"Routine immunization creates opportunities to educate parents about the benefits of vaccines and other health services. Engaging the community in planning, financing, and delivering the program can increase equity and build trust in the government's ability to deliver immunizations."

Author: Robert Steinglass, November 19 2014 - A man walks into a hospital. Finding the floors dirty, he demands to see the in-charge, who protests: “Impossible, sir, we’ve hired three sweepers.”

Of course, we instantly recognize the absurdity; and yet such an unbalanced focus on inputs - or stuff - frequently dominates our thinking as to...

"It is clear that the level of political commitment, the extent of engagement of regional and local leaders, the quality of public health leadership and management, and the involvement of civil society are totally inadequate. Pakistan puts the entire global goal in jeopardy."

"Polio eradication's surveillance, communications, and service delivery systems were unmatched in terms of combining quality with reach....Applying the resolve and dedication that characterizes polio eradication to a wider suite of services could provide communities with the services they are demanding, give workers a fresh reason for...

The authors of the more than 60 articles in this supplement to The Journal of Infectious Diseases reflect on the tools, tactics, and alliances that the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) partners have undertaken as part of the effort to combat the international spread of wild polioviruses into previously polio-free countries...

This is the second of two reports (see Related Summaries, below) in response to the circulation of wild poliovirus (WPV) in October 2013 after a 15-year absence.

"As the newly elected government establishes itself, it is critical that the national commitment to achieving polio eradication is maintained at the highest level."

"The Technical Advisory Group on Polio Eradication for Pakistan (TAG) conducted a meeting on 2-3 June 2014, during a time when the Pakistan programme is at a 'critical crossroads'....In the four months preceding the meeting, 86% of global polio cases were in Pakistan."

From the World Health Organization (WHO), Regional Office...

"The engagement of the traditional and religious leaders in the polio immunization campaign in northern Nigeria was vital to the success of the country's PEI and primary health care programs. The recent extension of the campaign to include polio survivors, Quranic school teachers, and entertainers, among others, is providing access to...

Author: Lora Shimp, June 12 2014 - "The two words 'information' and 'communication' are often used interchangeably, but they signify quite different things. Information is giving out; communication is getting through." Sydney J. Harris

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Nigeria

"The traditional leaders were the most successful in positively influencing the decision to vaccinate."

"It is clear that the level of political commitment, the extent of engagement of regional and local leaders, the quality of public health leadership and management, and the involvement of civil society are totally inadequate. Pakistan puts the entire global goal in jeopardy."

"What are some of the communication challenges in engaging people on polio immunization issues?"

This is one of the questions asked in this interview of Thomas Abraham, MA, who is affiliated with the Journalism and Media Studies Center (JMSC) at The University of Hong Kong and who is a consultant for the World Health...

The authors of the more than 60 articles in this supplement to The Journal of Infectious Diseases reflect on the tools, tactics, and alliances that the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) partners have undertaken as part of the effort to combat the international spread of wild polioviruses into previously polio-free countries...

Author: Heidi J Larson, PhD, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and Dept. Global Health, University of Washington, September 5 2014 - The myriad of challenges contributing to the persisting spread of Ebola in West Africa - the biggest Ebola outbreak since the viral haemorrhagic fever was discovered in 1976 - echo some of the...

"The engagement of the traditional and religious leaders in the polio immunization campaign in northern Nigeria was vital to the success of the country's PEI and primary health care programs. The recent extension of the campaign to include polio survivors, Quranic school teachers, and entertainers, among others, is providing access to...

"Eradicating polio requires that millions of parents allow their children to be given dose after dose of polio vaccine. Properly engaging them is key to success."

The above insight is one of those shared in the ninth report following from the tenth meeting of the Independent Monitoring Board (IMB) of the Global Polio...

"[M]en in the community should be the target for sensitization, [as] they are the ones that determine whether a child gets vaccinated or not."

In the context of sub-optimal immunisation uptake in Africa - in particular, of the oral polio vaccine (OPV), which has led Nigeria to be one of the few remaining polio-endemic countries...

"[Polio c]ommunication reviews have established themselves as valuable components of strategic communication planning and there is strong consensus that they need to continue. However, ...there are several areas of improvement that need to be considered..."

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Pakistan

"It is clear that the level of political commitment, the extent of engagement of regional and local leaders, the quality of public health leadership and management, and the involvement of civil society are totally inadequate. Pakistan puts the entire global goal in jeopardy."

"What are some of the communication challenges in engaging people on polio immunization issues?"

This is one of the questions asked in this interview of Thomas Abraham, MA, who is affiliated with the Journalism and Media Studies Center (JMSC) at The University of Hong Kong and who is a consultant for the World Health...

Author: Heidi J Larson, PhD, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and Dept. Global Health, University of Washington, September 5 2014 - The myriad of challenges contributing to the persisting spread of Ebola in West Africa - the biggest Ebola outbreak since the viral haemorrhagic fever was discovered in 1976 - echo some of the...

"The Technical Advisory Group on Polio Eradication for Pakistan (TAG) conducted a meeting on 2-3 June 2014, during a time when the Pakistan programme is at a 'critical crossroads'....In the four months preceding the meeting, 86% of global polio cases were in Pakistan."

From the World Health Organization (WHO), Regional Office...

"Hundreds of Pakistani labourers have been shown a short film that hopes to show them the importance of polio vaccinations."

Image Nation Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emerites (UAE), developed a film- and radio-based campaign running from June to September 2014 in an effort to create strong awareness about polio and polio vaccination...

"Eradicating polio requires that millions of parents allow their children to be given dose after dose of polio vaccine. Properly engaging them is key to success."

The above insight is one of those shared in the ninth report following from the tenth meeting of the Independent Monitoring Board (IMB) of the Global Polio...

Authors: Todd Summers and J. Stephen Morrison, May 28 2014 - In early January 2013, a dozen deans from America's premier public health schools wrote President Obama a letter protesting the CIA's use of a faked vaccination campaign in the hunt for Osama bin Laden.

"[Polio c]ommunication reviews have established themselves as valuable components of strategic communication planning and there is strong consensus that they need to continue. However, ...there are several areas of improvement that need to be considered..."

For the monitoring of coverage in supplementary immunisation activities (SIAs) carried out as part of the effort to eradicate polio in Pakistan (and, thus, globally), "automated systems based on short message service (SMS) texts appear to be an attractive and relatively inexpensive option." This is the conclusion of research conducted by Aga...

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Afghanistan

"It is clear that the level of political commitment, the extent of engagement of regional and local leaders, the quality of public health leadership and management, and the involvement of civil society are totally inadequate. Pakistan puts the entire global goal in jeopardy."

"As the newly elected government establishes itself, it is critical that the national commitment to achieving polio eradication is maintained at the highest level."

"Eradicating polio requires that millions of parents allow their children to be given dose after dose of polio vaccine. Properly engaging them is key to success."

The above insight is one of those shared in the ninth report following from the tenth meeting of the Independent Monitoring Board (IMB) of the Global Polio...

"Interpreting resistance to vaccination as essentially religio-cultural marginalises an understanding of resistance as the rational and strategic response by households and communities to systematic conditions of inequity and exclusion."

Author, Seye Abimbola, orignally posted October 11 2013, cross-posted March 31 2014:    

"Polio eradication will only be achieved with stronger health systems and bottom-up community engagement, which is likely to require more time and more investment than is currently available in Pakistan, Nigeria, and Afghanistan because of their political fragility."

Author Umaru Pate, February 5 2014: Professor, Department of Mass Communication, University of Maiduguri and Kaigamma of Adamawa, reflects on his recent experience as an expert panelist reviewing Afghanistan's polio communication programme. Professor Pate has also participated in similar reviews of Nigeria's polio communication programme...

In this presentation prepared as part of a polio Technical Advisory Group (TAG) meeting (November 30 - December 1 2013, Kabul, Afghanistan), the Ministry of Public Health explores:

"Public awareness was the key for the success we had - in the schools, the mosques - but now keeping polio-free is more important than becoming polio-free." - Governor of Kandahar, Afghanistan

Notes from the field - Pakistan December 2013

Author Chris Morry, from his Field Notes series for the Polio Network on December 11 2013:         It has been very busy since we left Afghanistan for Nigeria. So busy in fact that it was 24 hours before I learned of Nelson Mandela's death. His passing is a moment for reflection not only on the impact of...

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India

This paper describes a cross-sectional study conducted to assess the impact of social mobilisation on families in Aligarh, India who are resistant to giving polio drops to their children. Considering that there is a history of Muslim resistance to the oral polio vaccine (OPV) due to mistrust and rumour, it was deemed significant that the...

"What are some of the communication challenges in engaging people on polio immunization issues?"

This is one of the questions asked in this interview of Thomas Abraham, MA, who is affiliated with the Journalism and Media Studies Center (JMSC) at The University of Hong Kong and who is a consultant for the World Health...

"The usefulness of household visitation as a strategy to improving coverage of routine polio vaccination, one of the four pillars of the global polio eradication strategy, has not been documented previously."

Recognising that strengthening routine immunisation (RI) is one of the 4 prongs of the Global Polio Eradication...

"This report shows how, on a daily basis, eHealth innovations are improving access to care and assisting women to take control of their own health...[T]hrough the use of ICTs, health-care professionals and the women and children they care for, are better able to share important health information as well as communicate amongst themselves...

"The introduction of any new vaccine into routine vaccination programs requires a complex set of activities including: mobilization and leverage of political will and country leadership; advocacy and communications; advanced planning...; broad engagement of stakeholders...; alignment of staff and resources; and, allocation of sufficient and...

"[Polio c]ommunication reviews have established themselves as valuable components of strategic communication planning and there is strong consensus that they need to continue. However, ...there are several areas of improvement that need to be considered..."

"Why is the same vaccine accepted in one part of the world and rejected in another? Heidi Larson tells Fiona Fleck why communicating the benefits versus the risks of vaccination is just part of the battle to gain public confidence in vaccines."

This video from Polio Free India is a slideshow depicting the opening of the "Drops of Dialogue" polio gallery at District Hospital, Moradabad, Uttar Pradesh (UP), India created by CORE Group. As can be seen here, the event had the theme: for the children by the children: 1995 to 2014 (as symbolised by children taking part in the event). A...

"Interpreting resistance to vaccination as essentially religio-cultural marginalises an understanding of resistance as the rational and strategic response by households and communities to systematic conditions of inequity and exclusion."

"When we join hands, miracles happen."

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