In Madagascar, the South Eastern region has been hardest hit by malaria in recent years. This year for World Malaria Day, the Sud Est Volunteers really took action, with an eight community malaria fighting bike tour. The bike tour, largely fueled by the regions three health volunteers: Raffaele Macri, Brittany Bemis and Yu Sun, included many of the volunteers from the region joining and stopping off in the towns along the way.
In each town a malaria prevention mural was painted, which translated states “Fight against malaria; prevention is better than treatment” and then shows examples of prevention, symptoms and treatment. The painting of the mural was followed by Volunteers setting up a market booth for a day so that they could talk to the community about malaria prevention and treatment: they completed various neem cream demonstrations, worked with the local community health workers to talk about the importance of early treatment seeking behavior and IPTp use, and gave a demonstration about the simplicity of RDTs.
As we’re now learning from our partners, the Medecin Inspecteur from the region is so happy with the work that the Peace Corps volunteers did, that he is hoping to have a similar program and mural painted at all of the CSBs in the region. So, keep an eye out for the malaria bike tour 2013!