Vaccination campaigns in remote areas
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CTA. 2003. Vaccination campaigns in remote areas. Rural Radio Resource Pack 03/03. Wageningen, The Netherlands: CTA.
Permanent link to cite or share this item: https://hdl.handle.net/10568/57391
A divisional delegate for the Cameroon ministry responsible for livestock discusses the importance and difficulties of vaccination campaigns in remote areas.
Cue: Contagious or infectious livestock diseases are one of the biggest threats to livestock production in many parts of Africa. Controlling the spread of infectious diseases is usually the task of the government veterinary services, and one of the most effective ways of achieving this is through vaccination campaigns. But organising vaccination campaigns in remote areas is not easy. Many farmers are unaware of the benefits vaccination can give, and may also fear, sometimes correctly, that they will have to pay for any vaccines their animals are given. These factors can make them reluctant to bring all their animals for vaccination, which can greatly reduce the effectiveness of the campaign. How to improve this situation? One important factor is good communication with remote communities, as Martha Chindong found out when she spoke to Mrs Ndeng Ambe Bibiana, Divisional delegate for the Ministry of Livestock, Fisheries and Animal Industries in Cameroon?s Ngoketunjia division. She asked Mrs Ndeng how her department was able to organise effective vaccination campaigns for dispersed pastoral communities. IN: ?In fact that is one of the greatest ? OUT: ?will be for their own good.? DUR?N 3?59? BACK ANNOUNCEMENT: Mrs Ndeng Ambe Bibiana encouraging livestock farmers to take advantage of vaccination programmes and protect their animals against costly infectious diseases. Transcript Ndeng In fact that is one of the greatest problems we face. Before we go in for an exercise like this we call for sensitisation meetings. We have to actually educate them. We call for meetings here and there at the level of the division, at the level of the sub-division, at the level of the centres. So we work a lot before we start the exercise. If you just take off that you are going to do vaccination you will fail woefully because really people are not educated. So we have to sensitise them a lot. You go out to sensitise them, you call meetings to sensitise them and when they are fully prepared and aware that?s when you go out. And in fact you have to work within the season. Chindong How do you carry out the vaccination proper? Ndeng This we do by organising them according to their locality. So that those graziers in that locality can bring the animals there to avoid long trekking so that the animals are not tired when they arrive there. Chindong Some farmers, they feel scared when you say they should bring their cattle for vaccination maybe because they fear you will tax them. Do you face such problems? Ndeng A lot. In the past this vaccination used to be free. Government used to provide a vaccine and we did the work free of charge for them. So they started when things were not moving well, we started charging them 20 francs per dose until we are now at 130. So they feel that the money is too much. But at least what we have experienced this year is that the number of cattle coming up is increasing because last year the vaccine was 150 francs per dose but this year it has dropped to 130 and I think the graziers are a bit happier. They still want a drop but you see the vaccines themselves cost a lot. Chindong Now have you made this problem known to the ministry, that the vaccines are too expensive for poor farmers and isolated farmers? Ndeng Of course, when we receive their complaints - that is why we are there - when we receive their complaints we send them to the higher quarters. At meetings we complain. In writing we complain. They know we are complaining. And the result of their complaining now you can see last year as I say it was 150 francs per dose but this year it is 130 francs per dose. So they are happy that at least their complaints are being looked into. Chindong If you were to pass on a message to the farmers what will you tell them? Ndeng I will tell them to continue to have courage and know that we are out for the protection of their animals and not really for these revenue collections because if we were really out to collect money for these vaccines and their services, they cannot pay for those services and the cost of the vaccines. So we are really doing it to see to it that we have meat in the market and to do this we must protect the health of the animals. If we don?t protect the health of the animals we will not have good meat in the market and even the quantity we need. Chindong Before we go I don?t know whether you have any last word for the farmers? Ndeng Yes in fact I would like to advise the farmers that when there is an exercise of this nature they should present all their animals for vaccination because it is needless leaving some behind. Because when you leave some behind, those that you didn?t vaccinate will contaminate those that you vaccinated and therefore the money you even spend vaccinating the few was useless. So it was unnecessary for you to bring the few. And if you don?t bring, your animals will contaminate neighbouring animals, which is not good. We are there to see that they grow healthy animals. When your animals are healthy you sell them at a higher cost. So in fact if they can bring out all animals for vaccination, it will be for their own good. End of track.
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