Increasing the uptake of routine vaccinations for vulnerable children in rural areas of South Africa – Project launch.
First introduced in 1997, National Child Protection Week is a campaign held annually across South Africa to engage and educate the public to play their part in keeping children safe and to also raise awareness of the rights of children as articulated in the Children’s Act of 2005.This year the theme for the campaign is “Let us Protect Children During Covid-19 and Beyond.” The week-long campaign runs from 30 May 2021 until 6 June 2021. Led by the minister of Social development, it forms part of Government’s ongoing measures to raise awareness and mobilise communities to protect children from abuse, neglect, exploitation, ill-treatment and other forms of violence.
The campaign brings together Government and other like-minded organisations like World Vision to promote the safety and well-being of South African children.
South Africa is experiencing COVID-19 hesitancy which is affecting routine child vaccination uptake. Many refrain from visiting health facilities due to the high risk of transmission at the facilities or on the way, especially in crowded public transport. There is also misinformation and myths on vaccines and particularly the Covid-19 vaccine, which have over clouded facts, this disproportionally affects rural communities where there is limited access to information.
In commemoration of this important week, World Vision in partnership with AMREF Germany – GESUNDES AFRIKA is launching the “Increasing the uptake of routine vaccinations for vulnerable children in rural areas of South Africa” project.
The intervention seeks to successfully address risks and communication for the increased uptake of routine vaccinations such as BCG, measles, mumps, rubella, polio etc. vaccines, and support government to bring vaccines to the child. The approach is to bring healthcare to the patient instead of the guardians/parents and their children having to travel long distances and being exposed to a high risk of COVI-19 infection.The project was launched on the 1st of June 2021 for implementation in Limpopo (Ga-Sekororo and Sekgosese) and Eastern Cape (Nelson Mandela Bay) targeting 9000 children between 0-12 years of age in rural areas, as part of supporting and aligning with the Department of Health’s EPI (Expanded Programme on Immunisation).
World Vision South Africa and AMREF Germany – GESUNDES AFRIKA are working together to leave no child behind.