3.4 million people in South Sudan reached with COVID-19 messages
JUBA, SOUTH SUDAN, 28 MAY 2020 – 3,380,000 people in South Sudan have been reached with essential messages on COVID-19, UNICEF and the Ministry of Health said today. Since March 2020, a nationwide communication campaign has been ongoing aimed at raising awareness on the signs and symptoms of Coronavirus disease also known as COVID19 and measures communities can take to prevent further transmission of the disease.
The risk communication activities which include mobilizing, sensitizing and educating communities through media, face-to-face discussions, street announcements, posters, fliers and banners are ongoing in all ten states of South Sudan, but with a particular focus on Juba as the hotspot for the outbreak of the Coronavirus disease. Since the beginning of the campaign, 466,771 banners, posters and leaflets in five different languages have been printed and distributed; 42 radio stations have aired radio talk shows and information jingles in ten different languages; 4,118 community mobilizers have been trained on COVID-19 messages which they are relaying to people through interpersonal communication and megaphone announcements.
“I would like to send a strong message to our communities that they should take the preventive measures seriously and avoid crowded places,” said Mary Obat, Director of Health Education and Promotion in the Ministry of Health.
“If you cannot avoid crowds, please wear your cloth mask all the time, for example when using public transport or when going to the market. Corona virus is real and can kill but can be prevented. If you don’t feel well, call 6666 for help.”
The easiest ways to protect yourself is to practice frequent handwashing with soap and clean water, stop handshaking and keeping your distance from other people. To protect others, please cough and sneeze in a disposable handkerchief or in your flexed elbow and if you are sick, stay at home. It is also now widely recommended to wear face masks while in public. These can be easily made with some fabric and washed regularly.
“As the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases are rapidly increasing in South Sudan, it is important that people remain vigilant and take necessary steps to protect themselves and their families,” said Mohamed Ag Ayoya, the UNICEF South Sudan Representative. “I think we are all longing for everything to go back to normal, the sooner we can curb the spread of the disease, the sooner the life we knew could potentially resume.”
Note to editors:
Correct and confirmed information is essential to educate people on the Coronavirus disease. For more information about the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, please visit trusted sources of information such as WHO, UNICEF and CDC. Please refrain from publishing unconfirmed information.
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.
For more information about UNICEF and its work in South Sudan visit: www.unicef.org/southsudan