Rwamagabe, Rwanda; behavior change communication campaign to help curb the spread of COVI 19 pandemic

Mobisa Lydia
Posted September 7, 2020 from Rwanda

In July, The Ministry of Local Government (Minaloc) put six cells of Nyamagabe and Nyamasheke districts in Rwanda under lockdown.


Kigeme in Gasaka Sector and Ruhunga in Kibirizi sector -Nyamagabe were affected.  To date, Kigeme cell in Gakoma village is still under lockdown.


According to a statement by Minaloc, the decision was a result of a health assessment done after the pandemic was confirmed in some parts of the two districts.



Radio Ishingiro, a community radio program based in Northern Province in partnership with Water Aid, together with the district of Nyamagabe recently carried out ant- COVID campaign in Gasarenda Market- Nyamagabe District, Southern Province.


Dubbed ‘mobile /market place campaign’, is an ongoing two months communication campaign aimed at educating people on the importance of good hygiene and sanitation, through behavior change and mindset.


The same campaign has been conducted in Bugesera district as well, targeting market places.



Bonaventure Uwamahoro, mayor of Nyamagabe district said so far, the existing communication campaigning strategies in the district have turn out to be impactful.


For instance, he mentioned that before the campaign, less than 150 people in his district had embraced the cashless system but at the moment, the number has risen to 800 people.


The mayor said the campaign has also helped in changing the mindset of the residents, as most of them now know what’s required of them. However, he urged them to continue adhering to measures put in place to combat the spread of the virus.


Among the activities carried out during the campaign included using sound systems, moderators, and Q &A sessions


Residents were asked questions regarding hygiene and their role in the community to help curb the spread of the COVID-19 virus.


Those who got the questions right and give real examples on what they do, were awarded hygiene items including soaps, water stands, and face masks.


Ildephonse Sinabubariranga, the managing Director, Radio Ishingiro said behavior change can result in good sanitation, for instance, if people understand the reasons for washing hands, putting stands at their home becomes easy.


“As media industries and practitioners, apart from informing and entertaining, we have a big role in educating the public, which is fundamental as far as passing the right information on COVID 19 is concerned,” he said.


He cited that it’s not all about talking to people but talking with them.


“With information on COVID 19 everywhere, everyone is aware of the virus. However, letting them express what they know to others helps one understand well what is required of them,” he added.


Odette Kampogo, a 70-year-old resident of Tare sector, Nyamagabe who was among those awarded hygiene items  said apart from just her own health, understanding the repercussion of what the virus can cause is the way forward, and that youth should be at the forefront in understanding this, so that they can pass information to others.

Comments 5

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Tamarack Verrall
Sep 07
Sep 07

Hello Lydia,
It is good to have news of this region and to know that outreach is happening into communities that need information and supplies, especially with generosity of spirit, "it’s not all about talking to people but talking with them" and Odette speaking out for young people.


Nini Mappo
Sep 08
Sep 08

Hello Lydia,
Welcome to World Pulse. Thank you for sharing news from Rwanda. Good to hear that sensitisation and hygiene education is bringing results in area under lock down.

Take care of yourself and look forward to hearing more about you.

Hello, Lydia,

Welcome to World Pulse! I'm glad that a new voice from Rwanda is rising up!

Thanks for giving us an update on what your government is doing to help flatten the curve in your country. This is important information that could give insight to other nations. Please keep sharing your stories. We love to know more about you and what women are doing in your community.

Welcome again to our growing sisterhood!

Kamariza Byinshi
Sep 08
Sep 08

Salut Lydia !
Merci pour l'information et courage pour le partage.

Sep 09
Sep 09

Welcome to World Pulse Lydia. Your story is your power!

Thank you for sharing news about how your government is doing to prevent the spread of the virus. Bringing awareness in the community is very important. Dissemination of information is the key for us to be informed.