WACSOF, deepening regional integration and fostering stability and development in West Africa

Ebola 1


The West African Civil Society Forum [WACSOF] is set to work with the Economic Communities of West African States [ECOWAS] in the fight against Ebola in West Africa. 

This was made known at the ECOWAS meeting to adapt strategic community mobilization tools for the fight against Ebola in West Africa, held in Accra, Ghana.

It was a follow-up meeting to the workshop held from 28 to 29 September, 2014 on the development and harmonization of key communication messages and tools to combat the Ebola virus.

Hinged on the urgent need for mass community awareness to prevent the spread of the disease, experts were drawn from different sectors and organization to agree on the content of the messages necessary to sensitize the communities, as well as develop strategies and approaches for information dissemination.

Delivering a speech, the Health Adviser to the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Dr. Mariane Ngoulla, explained the key objective of the meeting stating that the aim was to adapt a strategic community and social mobilization plan with the adapted and adopted messages that will lead to community change.

She expressed a desire that the workshop comes to a logical conclusion so that the response can move to the next stage.

Speaking also, the Communication and Advocacy Officer of the West African Health Organization (WAHO), Mr. Kayode Egbeleye, informed the meeting of the collaborative efforts between ECOWAS and WAHO geared towards establishing regional approach to issues that is affecting the countries in the region.

Mr. Kayode Egbeleye gave example of such activities like Malaria control and elimination interventions that was successfully adopted to bring down malaria and Dengue fever.

Adding that a similar approach can be employed to fight Ebola Virus disease, he enjoined participants to make useful contribution for the heavy task ahead of the region.

Presentations were made by representatives from different organizations and sectors on already taken steps and intended plan of actions in containing the Ebola Virus Disease.

WACSOF also presented its plan on how it intends to mobilize communities in the 15 West African countries through its national platforms in the fight against the disease and stigmatization.

The Forum will also engage in monitoring and evaluation, reporting and documentation of data which earned it an opportunity to be among the committee on monitoring and document.

At the end of the meeting, it was concluded that the next step will be a simultaneous Capacity building for the media and the community mobilization groups.

It is expected to be a three day training for all the 15 Member States including representatives from the WACSOF National Platforms.

The proposed venue is Ghana at a location yet to be determined.


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