Educating Communities

"Sibo Fights Malaria"

An initiative from the UP ISMC in educating people about malaria has taken shape in the form of a children's book. Sibo is a curious, young girl with many adventures. For more information on Sibo's adventures go to www.sibo.co.za.

In her latest adventure, Sibo learns about malaria when she and her parents go to visit family in a malaria endemic area. A story, in the typical Sibo style, has been written with the objective to help change lifestyles when it comes to malaria. The book explains what the symptoms of malaria are and where to go for treatment, but it also notes the importance on how to avoid getting malaria in the first place. Students from the faculty of Education at UP are planning to use the book as a tool to educate and empower children (and thus their parents) through education on avoiding getting infected with malaria. This would potentially alter attitudes towards the disease and lead to lifestyle patterns that could help lessen the burden of malaria in endemic areas. There are also potential plans to determine the impacts of the book on health promotion, the economy and malaria incidence. The idea is to Hopefully this would aid in the fight towards the elimination of the disease. Click hereto see the book online (Lets Look Publishers owns the copyright on this book).

 

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Malaria Awareness Program (MAP)

About the Malaria Awareness Program (MAP)

A key programme of One Sun Health, MAP is a public health initiative that aims to create partnerships between health educators and community members in order to improve knowledge surrounding malaria. MAP involves an intensive community health worker training programme followed by a multi-week series of education workshops, which take place at the traditional leaders home in various villages. In 2012, MAP ran its pilot programme in six villages in HaMakuya by working with representatives from Makuya Clinic, Makuya Intersectoral Committee, Vhembe District Department of Health, and Tshulu Trust. The community health workers held a total of 24 education workshops (four unique workshops in each of the six villages), attracting over 350 participants. From 2013-2016, MAP continued this programme in HaMakuya with an emphasis on working within existing government and local health structures to ensure sustainability, as well as expanded its curriculum to Masisi, another high malaria-risk region of South Africa. To date, MAP has trained over 80 local health workers to empower over 1,300 community members throughout the Limpopo Province. In the near future, we hope to continue to scale MAP’s reach throughout other high-risk regions and replicate its model to improve other key health threats in these communities. Click here to see information on a "Winter field research opportunity for UP students".

About One Sun Health

One Sun Healthis a non-profit organization that aims to promote sustainable, locally driven solutions to public health challenges through community health education and social entrepreneurship initiatives in South Africa. In order to achieve this goal, One Sun Healthengages communities, resources, and governing organizations in collaborative efforts to minimize the impact of infectious disease.

About the founders

In 2011, the four founders of One Sun Healthmet on the Organization for Tropical Studies’ Global Health Issues study abroad programme in South Africa. During this programme, they conducted community based participatory health research on various issues that plague rural South Africa, including malaria. Their experience and interactions with communities in the region of HaMakuya, Limpopo Province sparked a passion to return the area to work with the local stakeholders to create a sustainable solution to a lack of malaria education and knowledge. In 2012, three of the founders returned to HaMakuya to pilot the Malaria Awareness Program, a series of educational workshops led by home-based care workers and held at the tribal leaders’ homes of various villages. During their evaluation of the programme, one of the major points of feedback from the 350 community participants was a sense of excitement about the knowledge gained through the programme, coupled with a strong desire to do something to protect themselves, their families, and their neighbors from contracting malaria. This was the seed of inspiration for ENETI, a programme which could provide a tangible means of malaria prevention for community members while also developing a powerful source of income and business development opportunities for local sewing cooperatives. One Sun Health's programmes have evolved from rural communities' public health related experiences, coupled with the involvement of local stakeholders, such as Nsasani Trust, Tshulu Trust, the University of Pretoria, and the Limpopo Department of Health. It is these community experiences and partnerships that have continued to drive the growth and impact of One Sun Health’s programmes.

 

 

 

 

Published by Taneshka Kruger

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