Communication for Social Mobilization: An Evaluative Study of the National Immunization Campaign in Nigeria
IOSR Journal of Humanities and Social Science
This study critically evaluates the communication strategies used in the campaign for social mobilization for the National Programme on Immunization in Nigeria. Its objective is to determine the communication factors that contributed to the participation of individuals and groups in the programme at the federal, state and local government levels. Fifty four (54,) subjects, consisting of 5 policy and decision makers in health, information and education sectors, 5 community leaders, 15 media
... nnel, 15 state health officials, 20 LGA officials, 12 representatives of non-governmental organizations, 5 opinion leaders, 7 clinic staff, 6 state health officials and 8 mothers were purposively selected from the federal level and two states; Imo and Kano states of Nigeria. Methodology used for data collection includes individual and group interviews and critical evaluation instruments. Findings show that the mass campaign strategy proved to be the most effective strategy for reaching both rural and urban dwellers and specific groups with immunization messages. The alliance between the health workers and community leaders, social groups, NGOs and the information education sectors, had a multiplier effect on the campaign and helped to create feelings of solidarity. The ubiquitous channels of traditional and religious leaders and youth groups helped to spread immunization messages and gain support for the programme. Women and women groups were adequately involved at the federal level and in Imo State, a Christian state in the South-East. This was not the case in Kano State, a muslim state in the north due to sociocuitural factors. The sustainability of the programme lies in more integration, more intersectoral collaboration, more institutionalization, more quality verification, more decentralization, greater local political commitment and a multistrategic approach to campaign planning and implementation.