Online Program

Story of Ebola

Tuesday, November 3, 2015 : 2:10 p.m. - 2:15 p.m.

Deborah Van Dyke, Global Health Media, Waitsfield, VT
The story features a young girl whose grandfather dies from Ebola and puts the rest of her family at risk. The film makes visible the invisible Ebola germs to help people see and understand how Ebola spreads and how to protect themselves. Critical messages are woven through the story so that people better understand Ebola, see themselves within the context of an outbreak, and see how to act in ways that can keep themselves safe from the disease and protect their communities.

Although the situation in West Africa has improved dramatically, the Ebola crisis continues to threaten communities in that region. This film is intended to be part of ongoing educational and awareness efforts that are critical in eradicating this disease.

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and UNICEF are launching this animation—produced by Global Health Media Project (GHMP) in collaboration with Yoni Goodman—which brings to life key messages that help people see and understand how Ebola spreads and how to protect themselves and their communities.

“By making the invisible Ebola germ visible, we hope to help people grasp transmission in a simple and visual way to help them protect themselves and prevent the disease from spreading,” said GHMP founder Van Dyke. “Animated storytelling can captivate and teach – and also help change behavior in ways that make communities more safe.”

Containing the spread of Ebola and preventing the threat of geographical creep continue to be key priorities for IFRC and UNICEF. The re-emergence of cases in what were thought to be cleared locations in Sierra Leone and Guinea, as well as the new case in Liberia remind us, once again, that this epidemic is far from over and could easily spread to other countries. Strengthening communication interventions is vital.

“Fear, suspicion and misconceptions spread faster than any disease, and disseminating life-saving information has been a critical undertaking. Behavioural change interventions that make people aware of the dangers can stop the disease from spreading even further” said UNICEF.

 The animation was produced in collaboration with award-winning animator Yoni Goodman. It will soon be translated in French, Portuguese and a number of local languages. Guidelines will help frontline health workers, Red Cross volunteers and community members engage people and communities in local dialogues and debates.

‘People in the community stood up and helped turn the Ebola outbreak around. At risk-communities and local actors are the key drivers of change. New communication tools and visual instruments will help people and communities to further overcome fear and stigma, address resistance and take action to prevent and contain the Ebola virus” concluded, Norbert Allale, head of the IFRC Regional Ebola Operation.

Learning Areas:

Protection of the public in relation to communicable diseases including prevention or control
Public health or related education
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Explain the story of how Ebola spreads and how to protect one's self.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the Director of Global Health Media which produces and distributes high-quality videos that bring to life critical health information for providers and populations in low-resource settings.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.