Creative artists converge for immunization advocacy

WAVA hosted its first-ever creative arts workshop on immunization at Planet One Hotel, Ikeja, Lagos on March 23rd, 2017. The event was geared towards engaging creative artists with minimal or no health background in the campaign for immunization advocacy. The workshop also sought to produce simpler and more appealing health messages – than those currently available – targeting policy makers and the general public on the need for adequate budgetary provisions for the Routine Immunization (RI) programme in Nigeria. Using WAVA’s existing bank of evidence-based messages on immunization, 18 artists went to work in delivering aesthetic and engaging materials – including short videos, cartoons and infographics – which will be used to sustain and increase immunization advocacy efforts.

Independent judges with expertise in health communication messaging were on hand to provide constructive critiques of the artworks, including visuals and videos. All participants provided some feedback to the work their peers presented and these recommendations were accepted for improvements to their works. A major takeaway for the workshop includes the creation of a new team of communication experts who are more knowledgeable about the immunization programme and the health and economic benefits of vaccines. In addition, they have pledged commitment to being champions for sustainable immunization financing in Nigeria. The products of the arts workshop are tailored for easy use on social media and will acknowledge the artists.

Participants at the workshop include Dr. Boladale Ogunbayo: health communication specialist and member of the Nigeria Immunization Technical Advisory Group (NITAG); Blaise Aboh, Lead at Orodata; Messrs. David Nnaji (Lead), Stanley Achonu (Operations Manager) and Abayomi Akinbo (Project Manager) of Dun Entertainment; Grace Olomiwe, Communication Officer at Save the Children Nigeria; Mrs. Enow Anyanwu (Director) and Nkechi Onweluzo (Program Officer) at Gender Care Initiative (WAVA member in Lagos State); Dr. Adeosun Wale, Director at African Youth Initiative on Population Health and Development (AfrYPoD); Dr. Edafe Omuabor, publisher of Med-Q Health Magazine; Malu Terver, second-placed winner of the 2016 World Pneumonia Day Video Challenge; and other freelance artists, as well as students from the creative arts department at the Yaba College of Technology Lagos State.

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