IFRC, UNICEF and Global Health Media Project
launch Ebola animation video to engage communities at risk
Geneva / Dakar, 6 July 2015 – The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and UNICEF are today launching “The Story of Ebola” an animation video, produced by Global Health Media Project (GHMP), that brings to life key messages to help people see and understand how Ebola spreads and how to protect themselves and their communities.
“By making the invisible Ebola virus visible, we hope to help people grasp how it is transmitted in a simple and visual way to help them protect themselves and prevent the disease from spreading,” said Deborah Van Dyke, founder of GHMP. “Animated storytelling can captivate and teach – and also help change behavior in ways that make communities safer.”
Containing the spread of Ebola and preventing the threat of it spreading further continue to be key priorities for IFRC and UNICEF. The re-emergence of cases in what were thought to be cleared locations in Sierra Leone and Guinea, as well as new cases in Liberia are reminders that that this epidemic is far from over and could easily spread to other countries. Strengthening communication interventions is vital.
“The new cases in Liberia show us that that our efforts should not be focussed on becoming Ebola-free, but on staying Ebola-free,” said Savita Naqvi, UNICEF Regional Advisor on Communications for Development. “It’s not over yet and no one should drop their guard. We need to continue working with communities, keeping them engaged and vigilant, even beyond zero new cases.”
The animation was produced in collaboration with award-winning animator Yoni Goodman. It will soon be translated in French, Portuguese and a number of local languages. Guidelines will help frontline health workers, Red Cross volunteers and community members to engage people and communities in local dialogues and debates.
”People in the community stood up and helped turn the Ebola outbreak around. At risk-communities and local actors are key drivers to stop Ebola. New communication tools such as this video enhance community engagement and help people overcome fear and stigma, address resistance and take action to prevent and contain the virus,” concluded, Norbert Allale, head of the IFRC Regional Ebola Operation.