Save the Children health worker Ahishakiye delivers COVID-19 prevention messages to families waiting outside a clinic. Image credit: Thacien Biziyaremye / Save the Children

Featuring: Kathryn Bertram, READY / Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs; Sharath Srinivasan, Africa’s Voices Foundation; Sharon Reader, IFRC Africa Regional Office || Theme: Understanding the concerns, perceptions, and misinformation barriers to practicing preventative behaviors in Sub-Saharan African countries, and what is being done to address them.

“Risk Communication and Community Engagement: Perceptions, Misinformation, and Concerns in African Countries in the Time of COVID-19” is the latest in READY’s weekly webinar series, COVID-19 and Humanitarian Settings: Knowledge and Experience Sharing (view the series playlist on YouTube).

This webinar took place on Wednesday, April 29, 2020. Follow-up discussion questions will be posted on READY’s discussion forum (registration required).

View the webinar recording:

Webinar Summary

Recent reports and provisional modeling by UN agencies and the WHO estimate that the number of cases and lives lost in Africa due to COVID-19 could surge within 3-6 months. Urban populations are of particular concern since the majority live in overcrowded neighborhoods, while unreliable access to hand-washing facilities and widespread rumors and misinformation are challenges in both rural and urban settings. In this webinar, Sharon Reader, Senior Advisor for Community Engagement and Accountability, IFRC Africa Regional Office, and Sharath Srinivasan, co-founder and Senior Advisor, Africa’s Voices Foundation, discussed the work they are doing to understand the concerns, perceptions, and misinformation barriers to practicing preventative behaviors in Sub-Saharan African countries, and what is being done to address them.

Moderator: Kathryn Bertram, Social Behavior Change Advisor, READY; Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs

Expert Speakers:

  • Sharath Srinivasan, Co-founder and Senior Advisor, Africa’s Voices Foundation
  • Sharon Reader, Community Engagement and Accountability, IFRC Africa Regional Office
United States Agency for International Development Johns Hopkins Center for Humanitarian Health, Save the Children, Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs, UK Med, EcoHealth Alliance, Mercy Malaysia

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