North Kivu Ebola Virus Disease Awareness Raising and Prevention Project

September 04, 2018

World Vision Ireland, as part of the North Kivu Ebola Virus Disease Awareness Raising and Prevention Project - supported by Irish Aid, will implement hygiene and awareness support to communities affected by recent Ebola outbreaks in the Democratic Republic of Congo. 

Current situation

On August 1st, 2018, The National Ministry of Health of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) notified the World Health Organisation (WHO) of an outbreak of the Ebola virus disease (EVD) in the health zone of Mabalako, in the North Kivu Province, located in the east of the country. 

As of August 27th, 2018, a total of 107 cases of hemorrhagic fever have been reported in the region, of which 79 have been confirmed. Sadly, 42 of these have been fatal. 

Reaching out

In response, The North Kivu Ebola Virus Disease Awareness Raising and Prevention Project, which will run for 5 months, will train 60 community leaders, 45 health professionals and Community Health Workers (CHWs) and 500 teachers in an effort to contain and minimise the spread of the virus by raising awareness and providing hygiene support. 

By training teachers and distributing hygiene kits (like hand washing kits, supplies of chlorine granules and a stock of soap), the project, supported by Irish Aid and implemented by World Vision, will reach 250 schools and 45,000 pupils (20,387 girls and 24,613 boys). 500 vulnerable households, churches, mosques, bus stations and markets will also be reached with similar, smaller hygiene kits. 

Planned activities

World Vision proposes to focus on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) activities. This will entail equipping communities with materials and equipment for hand washing and hygiene and distributing hygiene kits to targeted locations as well as raising awareness. 

Awareness sessions will take place about the symptoms of EVD and prevention measures, like washing hands, burial management, cooking and preparation of food. These discussions will take place at distribution sites. 

As part of the prevention strategy, Wold Vision proposes to distribute and display posters and flyers in public places and conduct radio awareness campaigns. Furthermore, awareness will be raised through World Vision’s Channels of Hope (CoH) for Ebola project model, which works with faith and community leaders to change community WASH behaviour. This strategy had proven effective in Sierra Leone and Senegal in the 2014 West Africa Ebola outbreak. 

With school starting in September, it is urgent to implement prevention plans in schools. This project is primarily a community-based intervention aimed at strengthening the system’s preparedness capacity to prevent and control potential EVD spread. The community’s involvement is key to the success of the intervention. 

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