How did local radio stations support their communities during the Ebola crisis?
During the 2014/5 Ebola outbreak in Sierra Leone BBC Media Action supported staff at 42 local or community-based radio stations to improve communication about the disease.
During the 2014/5 Ebola outbreak in Sierra Leone BBC Media Action supported staff at 42 local or community-based radio stations to improve communication about the disease. Case studies indicate these stations were able to provide actionable information and contributed to changing listeners’ attitudes as well as providing a platform for people to interact with those involved in the response.
Sierra Leone was initially declared Ebola free in November 2015. By then the 2014/5 outbreak had claimed the lives of 3,955 people in the country.
During the Ebola outbreak, BBC Media Action worked closely with local radio stations as part of the Social Mobilisation Action Consortium (SMAC) to provide platforms for discussions and give listeners timely, relevant and practical information. The SMAC project began in October 2014, just before the outbreak reached its peak when there was still widespread misinformation about the disease.
BBC Media Action’s support to local stations involved training sessions, on-the-job mentoring and providing production equipment and financial support. This work was funded with UK aid from the UK government.