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581 Mitigating the risks of child safety during COVID-19 through blended awareness campaigns
  1. Farukh Ahmed1,2,
  2. Rehana Parveen1,2,
  3. Aminur Rahman1,2
  1. 1Center for Injury Prevention and Research Bangladesh (ciprb), Dhaka, Bangladesh
  2. 2International Drowning Prevention and Research Division, Dhaka, Bangladesh


Context The global health pandemic has affected children disproportionately across the globe. The closure of child drowning intervention amplified the child drowning risk while children stayed at home since parents were busy undertaking household duties despite the pandemic. The project Bhasa implemented blended awareness-raising campaigns to mitigate the risks of COVID-19 infections and child drowning in Bangladesh.

Process Multiple awareness-raising campaigns of drowning and COVID-19 prevention were undertaken for targeting different communities in the project sites. For religious communities’ awareness, religious leaders campaigned at religious gatherings. The loudspeaker campaigns were conducted to aware hard to reach communities. The SMS campaigns targeted parents utilizing a mobile platform. The cable network campaign and community radio show were executed for mass communities. Additionally, caregivers visited those children who were comparatively at higher risk of drowning. Finally, an alternative play-based community supervision service was delivered while the intervention was closed.

Purpose The purpose of the delivering blended awareness campaigns was to minimize the risks of child safety during Covid-19 pandemic.

Analysis The religious leader campaign reach outnumbered (112,575) its targeted reach was 68,820. The community radio campaign’s reach was 250,000 mass community people, whereas the TV cable network campaign’s reach was double (54,000) than its target (24,000). Loudspeaker campaign’s reach exceeded (804,024) its targeted beneficiaries (2,00000). The SMS campaign beneficiary reach was lower (6,635) than the projection (6862). A total of 450 children received alternative play-based community supervision services through 60 centers. Bad weather conditions, transportations, power cuts, weak phone signals, and busy work schedules were the main challenges reported during the campaigns.

Outcomes Overall, the campaigns were able to reach and aware its targeted beneficiaries and mass communities beyond the project implementation sites. Altering schedules, using alternative vehicles, continuing to follow by phone calls, utilizing community volunteers for monitoring field activities, alternative community daycare models were some applied mitigating actions to ensure children’s safety during the pandemic.

Learning Outcomes Blended campaigns and their mitigating actions could be replicated to raise awareness among different communities in an emergency.

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