Working with communities to support them through the crisis and help bring Ebola to an end.
During the 2014-15 Ebola outbreak in West Africa, Red Cross teams went door-to-door and worked with community elders and religious leaders to ensure families knew about how the virus is spread, what the symptoms are, and the importance of early treatment. Besides the door-to-door visits to deliver key messages and enter into a dialogue, the Red Cross is using a range of communication channels, from television soap opera and interactive radio programmes to SMS messaging to promote behaviour change.
Myths were debunked, the truth was told. The disease is not airborne, or spread in water, or passed on by witchcraft or evil doers. It comes from direct contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person.From the community in turn, structured feedback provided a wealth of information and data.
Community engagement was not new but the needs thrown up by Ebola had established it as an essential tool found across the board of operations.
Communities in action
Mary Juana was a nurse at the ‘kindergarten’ at the IFRC Ebola treatment centre in Kono, Sierra Leone. She is also an Ebola survivor. This is her story.
[ed. note: Data @ IFRC is a blog series to share highlights from the Red Cross Red Crescent Secretariat and National Societies. We will include learning opportunities and thought pieces on all things data from ethics to evidence.] Information Managemen …
“We believe this sickness that was killing us was God’s punishment to Liberia because we are not going by his words.” Regular caller to the radio programme The 2014 Ebola outbreak in West Africa was the largest and most complex since the Ebola virus w …
When the Ebola virus disease erupted in Guinea in December 2013 and quickly spread to Liberia and Sierra Leone, Gambians considered the outbreak as a distant cry until six months later when it struck neighbouring Senegal and Mali. As the second smallest country in West Africa, Gambians feared that if Ebola ever struck their soil, it would have devastating consequences on the small population of 1.8 million people.