Combating Contagious Diseases: Interactive Influenza Preparedness Exhibitions and Programs

Project description

Title: Combating Contagious Diseases: Interactive Influenza Preparedness Exhibitions and Programs
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: Indonesia
Lead executing agency: Pusat Peragaan IPTEK (Science and Technology Center of Indonesia)
Overall term: 2011 to 2012

Context
Indonesia is highly prone to the spread of infectious diseases, and in recent years has faced three major health scares, including avian influenza. In 2009, more than one thousand cases of H1N1 were reported, with 10 deaths being recorded as a result of the disease. To prevent the spread of such infectious diseases in Indonesia, it is important to improve the level of knowledge within the wider community regarding pandemics and means of preventing infection.

Objective
An interactive exhibition is successfully informing school children and their parents about how infectious diseases are spread and about effective means of prevention.

Approach
The ‘Combating Contagious Diseases’ exhibition was developed and designed by Pusat Peragaan Iptek (PPIPTEK), a non-profit organisation managed by the Indonesian Ministry of Research and Technology. PPIPTEK is Indonesia’s largest science and technology education centre and is already the home of about 250 exhibitions.

The exhibition on diseases is interactive and requires the visitors’ enthusiastic participation. They can, for example, explore a larger-than-life model of the human respiratory system. Each of the two lungs is shown in a different state, one healthy the other infected with influenza. This gives the visitors the rare chance of seeing for themselves the effect that a flu infection has on the human body.

The exhibition is targeted at children of all ages, from kindergarten to high school. A traditional puppet show is used to teach young children about the importance of personal hygiene. Older children can test their new knowledge of infectious diseases in a board game. There are also seminars, workshops and training courses, as well as materials for teachers on influenza preparedness. To ensure the information presented by PPIPTEK is scientifically correct and meets the needs of the various target groups, the exhibition was developed in collaboration with the WHO.

On behalf of BMZ, the project was supported by the German Pandemic Preparedness Initiative of GIZ.

Results achieved so far
The exhibition opened in Jakarta on 5 June 2012. In its first month, it already attracted more than 40,000 visitors, most of whom were school-aged children, as well as their parents and teachers.

Visitors to the exhibition were interviewed, and the results of the survey demonstrated that the exhibition had helped to increase their knowledge about infectious diseases and how to prevent them.

The running costs of the exhibition are covered by the Ministry of Research and Technology. This means it is sure to stay open for several years and reach a wide audience.

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