Health communication initiatives inform and educate adults and children about common eye conditions and the importance of eye health
Why is health communication important?
Imagine if you had experienced poor vision from childhood and had never seen your world clearly, or you did not realise due to culture beliefs that old age doesn’t have to involve being blind? How would you know differently unless influenced by intervention?
We know for children that vision impairment has a direct impact on learning, absenteeism and long term educational goals and life dreams. Equally, an adult’s vision impacts their ability to do their job effectively, their capacity to earn an income, the well-being and future prospects of their family particularly in a developing context.
What methods do we use to communicate?
Our health communication strategies use a wide range of methods including print materials, radio promotion, public display items, social media campaigns and community contact such as eye screenings, cultural events, talks and information workshops.
We target people of all ages within the communities in which we work, however we believe children are a critical focus group for our eye health communication strategies. Wherever possible we ensure children are not simply the beneficiaries of eye health activities, but are important links in the process for lasting social change. Children learn by doing and we know they are a valuable resource for reaching other children, family members, extended social networks and their communities.
“Our research surrounding the Vision Champions program has conclusively proven the effectiveness of the Child to Child approach in promoting eye health. Specifically training young community members to empower their knowledge and promote eye health within their communities has proved very effective. We should consider more child eye health programs factoring this innovative approach into their design.”