The African continent is struggling to get its citizens vaccinated against COVID-19, and this is primarily due to young people refusing to receive the jab.
A New York Times article indicated that in the past, vaccine shortage posed a significant threat in Africa, but it appears that vaccine hesitance and logistical issues are getting in the way of a progressive roll-out.
According to reports, only 1 in 10 people are fully vaccinated, but the picture changes from country to country.
Throughout the pandemic, the Children’s Radio Foundation has reported having trained 500 youth reporters in five countries to inform members of their communities about the different COVID variants.
“The youth reporters were able to use their radio broadcasts to drive vaccine uptake, especially in areas where information access is limited,” said the Foundation’s Spokesperson.
This initiative created an impact on their communities, which led to the Children’s Radio Foundation starting a global conversation on vaccine hesitation.
In the Foundation’s latest episode on the Radio Workshop, ‘Young, Unvaccinated, and African’, the organisation interviewed a paramedic from Zimbabwe wrestling with his viewpoint on illegal vaccine cards.
It then spoke to a mother who believes more in social media updates than the World Health Organisation (WHO).
In Nigeria, the youth reporters went to a mobile vaccine centre located at a major intersection in Lagos to ensure the people had access.
According to the Children’s Radio Foundation’s Spokesperson, understanding people’s hesitation is essential to solving the issue and curbing the pandemic, thus ensuring that our efforts, including the peer-to-peer radio programs and campaigns, are effective.
Listen to Radio Workshop Ep. 4 ‘Young, Unvaccinated and African’ HERE.