In collaboration with KawalCovid19.id, a voluntary initiative by a group of pro-data Indonesian netizens consisting of health practitioners, academics, and professionals, LeaN On by INVEST DM organized a virtual COVID-19 Q&A session on 30th of November, 2020. This event aimed to strengthen LeaN On by INVEST DM caseworkers’ understanding of the spread, risks, and prevention of COVID-19.
The Q&A session invited two speakers: the co-founder of KawalCOVID19.id, Elina Ciptadi, and an internist from KawalCovid19.id network, dr. Sayuri Suwandi, SpPD. Moderated by Gabriella Suarez, MBBS from ThisAble Foundation — LeaN On by INVEST DM’s partner organization, Elina and dr. Sayuri carefully addressed various COVID-19-related questions raised by the caseworkers, based on the facts, data, and their areas of expertise.
The virtual session, which was originally scheduled for one and a half hours, was extended to more than two hours due to the high enthusiasm amongst the participants as well as the speakers. In addition to the 30 questions that were curated from LeaN On by INVEST DM caseworkers before the event took place, more than 70 additional questions were asked during the live event. The questions raised were very diverse, ranging from clinical symptoms, alternative treatments, availability of vaccines, to various about COVID-19 myths and misinformation that are widely circulating among Indonesians.
The enthusiasm shown by more than 260 participants with a variety of interesting questions illustrates the longing of people with disabilities and marginalized groups — represented by the LeaN On by INVEST DM caseworkers — for accurate COVID-19 information. Fortunately, the information provided by dr. Sayuri and KawalCOVID19.id seemed to have successfully amended caseworkers’ understanding of various aspects surrounding COVID-19.
Following the direction given by the Director of Disaster Management Strategy Development, Mr. Agus Wibowo, LeaN On by INVEST DM is committed to involving more experts from various fields to optimize our COVID-19 risk-communication activities. The involvement of experts is believed to help the 500+ LeaN On by INVEST DM caseworkers who come from the vulnerable groups in rolling out reliable, up-to-date, and inclusive COVID-19 risk-communication in Medan, Jabodetabek, Bandung, Yogyakarta, Solo, Surabaya, Kediri and its surroundings, until January 2021.
LeaN On by INVEST DM is an inclusive RCCE program that aims to provide access to risk information and education on COVID-19 prevention, including information on available social protection services, for 165 thousand people with disabilities and other vulnerable groups in seven regions in Indonesia. This program is supported by the American people through USAID, and in partnership with BNPB, Kemenkumham, MAJu (The Asia Foundation) and a consortium of partners consisting of Mercy Corps Indonesia, ASB, ThisAble, Human Initiative and AtmaConnect.