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Govt Launches Campaign To Fight 'Infodemic' Against COVID Vaccine, Secure Livelihood In Tribal Communities

Steps would be taken to promote 'livelihood with health' in tribal areas, fast-track the activities of Van Dhan Vikas Kendras (VDVK), and ramp up the process of inoculating the population.

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The Ministry of Tribal Affairs on Thursday, July 15, launched a campaign to boost COVID-19 vaccination among the tribal population in the country to protect the most vulnerable groups, according to an official statement.

Arjun Munda, Minister of Tribal Affairs, virtually launched the 'COVID Teeka Sang Surakshit Van, Dhan aur Uddyam' campaign that will safeguard the livelihoods of the tribal communities along with their health.

The minister said that steps would be taken to promote 'livelihood with health' in tribal areas, fast track the activities of Van Dhan Vikas Kendras (VDVK), and ramp up the process of inoculating the population that is engaged in procurement, processing, and marketing of handlooms, handicrafts and forest produces.

The campaign will spread vaccine awareness among tribal people. The focus will be on dispelling misconceptions and fear surrounding the COVID-19 vaccine. The government has decided to involve local leaders and influencers to gain the trust of the people.

Collaboration Between TRIFED, UNICEF, And WHO

The campaign will leverage the 45,000 Van Dhan Vikas Kendras (VDVK) of the Tribal Co-operative Marketing Development Federation of India (TRIFED). It will be carried out by TRIFED in collaboration with UNICEF and WHO. Under the campaign, more than 50,000 villages in 309 districts will be reportedly covered.

"We have been able to overcome two challenging waves, gained experience and are determined to stop the third wave. We have a role to play in rebuilding a new society, free of COVID infection," Munda said while launching the campaign, as per the statement.

Campaign To Beat 'Infodemic' Against The Vaccine

The Minister acknowledged that the prevalent disinformation is making people hesitant about the vaccine. He explained that myths, rumors, and misinformation are adding to the 'infodemic.'

According to media reports, a few officials stated that people have the misconception that vaccine shots were going to impact their stamina and thus may have an effect on their livelihood. Meanwhile, others rubbish the coronavirus infection as normal 'cold and cough' and think they already have the immunity.

Fertilisers outlet centers, haats and bazaars, milk collection points and Van Dhan Vikas Kendras will be used for creating awareness.

With a focus on high resistant areas, tribal folk songs, especially those used on the occasions of birth, marriage, and death, will be tapped. Pre-recorded messages will be used in local dialects and languages for the awareness campaign.

The campaign focuses on reassurance, pride, and self-efficacy. It will highlight the three key Js- Jeevan (Life), Jeevika (Livelihood), and Jagrukta(Awareness).

Also Read: Free Vaccination Service At Doorstep For Specially-Abled, Elderly Of Puducherry

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Writer : Nishit Navin
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Editor : Palak Agrawal
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Creatives : Palak Agrawal