Armed with the correct information, mothers can protect babies in the womb from Zika. The challenge is to get the correct information to mothers in ways they can understand and use it.
SHOPS Plus is collaborating with local entities in Haiti to ensure that the proper messages are effectively conveyed to those who need it most. Through spots on local radio stations and in street banners, the project alerts Haitians to the symptoms of Zika infection, the means of prevention and control, and the ways the virus is transmitted. Project staff created a poster on Zika and pregnancy, and distributed more than 9,000 to clinics supported by USAID through the Maternal and Child Survival Project, the Haitian Red Cross, and the Haitian Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology.
Increasing reach through collaboration
Throughout the spring and summer of 2017, SHOPS Plus teamed up with other projects to extend its reach in preventing the negative effects of Zika on babies. The team tapped the network of vector control agents of ZAP, a global project funded by USAID and led by Abt Associates, and the volunteer network of the Haitian Red Cross to distribute 23,000 pamphlets on the virus. Working with the USAID-supported Maternal and Child Survival Project, the team conducted 155 community meetings, reaching almost 500 people, including more than 300 women of reproductive age with messages on preventing mosquito bites by wearing long sleeves, using mosquito nets, and eliminating mosquito breeding sites, particularly when pregnant.