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Social science and behavioural data compilation, DRC Ebola outbreak, June - August 2019

Bardosh, K.; T. Jones and J. Bedford, Eds.: Social Science in Humanitarian Action: A Communication for Development Platform, (2019)

This rapid compilation of data analyses provides a ‘stock-take’ of social science and behavioural data related to the on-going outbreak of Ebola in North Kivu, South Kivu and Ituri provinces. Based on data gathered and analysed by organisations working in the Ebola response and in the region more broadly, it explores convergences and divergences between datasets and, when possible, differences by geographic area, demographic group, time period and other relevant variables. Data sources are listed at the end of the document.

Social resistance drives persistent transmission of Ebola virus disease in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo: A mixed-methods study

Masumbuko ClaudeK, Underschultz J,Hawkes MT, (2019)

PLoSONE 14(9):e0223104. The survey centering on reasons behind community resistance was conducted in Butembo in November during a time of Ebola transmission. A researcher from Catholic University of Graben in Butembo and collaborators at the University of Alberta in Edmonton published their findings on Sep 26 in PLOS One. To spark focus group discussions, the researchers used an 18-item questionnaire based on similar ones used during West Africa's outbreak in Guinea, where community resistance and episodes of violence also complicated the outbreak response. Participants were a convenience sample of 670 adults from the region who were recruited by medical students at Catholic University of Graben. Those surveyed included clinicians, community members, and displaced persons.

Négotiation de l'accès humanitaire au Nord-Kivu: perceptions des acteurs armés non étatiques, des communautés et des acteurs humanitaires

Geneva Call, (2019)

En réponse à la réduction de l’espace humanitaire au Nord Kivu, en République démocratique du Congo (RDC), ce rapport met en lumière les pratiques des ONG opérant dans la zone, en termes de négociation d’accès. Il explore la manière dont les communautés et les Acteurs Armés Non Etatiques (AANE) perçoivent les différents intervenants humanitaires actifs dans la région et comment les ONG négocient leur accès. Sur cette base, le rapport liste des recommandations visant à améliorer l’accès humanitaire au Nord Kivu, permettant ainsi une meilleure réponse aux besoins des populations civiles.

Social Science in Humanitarian Action Key considerations: Ebola preparedness and readiness in Goma, DRC

Peyton, D.; I. Gercama and J. Bedford, Eds.: Social Science in Humanitarian Action: A Communication for Development Platform, (2019)

This brief summarises key considerations about the social, political and economic context of Goma in relation to the outbreak of Ebola in the DRC as of March 2019. Goma is the administrative capital of North Kivu province and a major urban centre in the Great Lakes Region. The city is home to an estimated 1.5 million people and serves as an important economic and transportation hub that links eastern Congo to the broader East African sub-region. The arrival of Ebola in Goma would substantially increase the at-risk population and heighten the potential for cross-border transmission to neighbouring countries, particularly Rwanda. This brief therefore focuses on local social and political structures that can be leveraged to promote preparedness and readiness actions.

Social Science in Epidemics: Ebola Virus Disease lessons learned. Summary

Social Science in Humanitarian Action: A Communication for Development Platform, (2019)

This brief draws out some recommendations for Ebola response actors in North Kivu. It includes lessons learned primarily from (i) historical outbreaks in Congo; (ii) outbreaks in Uganda in 2000-01 and 2012; (iii) the 2014-2016 West African epidemic; (iv) the outbreak in Equateur Province in DRC (May- July 2018), and (v) the ongoing outbreak in North Kivu and Ituri Provinces in DRC (August 2018 - ongoing). The full report can be accessed here:

Crucial Course Corrections for the Ebola Response in Benin, DRC (3 Oct 2018)

Oxfam, (2018)

The DRC government, the UN, national and international NGOs, health workers, local leaders and community members have prevented Ebola getting out of control in Beni, North Kivu, despite the complex context. However, major challenges remain. In the last week of September, almost all response activities were stopped after an armed group attacked Beni, and civil society called for a general strike or ‘ville mort’ in the town. The virus continues to emerge in new areas, including insecure ones, and amongst people who were not previously known to have been in contact with victims. So-called “community resistance” is cited as a daily challenge. Looking ahead to the next phase of the response, now is a critical moment to recalibrate and put more emphasis on building trust and engagement with communities, alongside the essential medical response.

Considérations clés : la situation de la province du Nord-Kivu en RDC

Social Science in Humanitarian Action: A Communication for Development Platform, (2018)

Cette note stratégique porte spécifiquement sur le Grand Nord : soit les territoires de Beni et de Lubero au nord du Nord-Kivu constituant l’épicentre de la flambée épidémiquee. D’autres enquêtes participatives doivent être menées auprès des populations touchées, mais étant donné l’actuelle transmission du virus, la priorité a été accordée à la communication des considérations clées et des recommandations immédiates.

Key considerations: the context of North Kivu province, DRC

Social Science in Humanitarian Action: A Communication for Development Platform, (2018)

This brief focuses specifically on the Grand Nord (Great North): the Beni and Lubero territories of northern North Kivu that are the epicentre of the outbreak. Further participatory enquiry should be undertaken with the affected populations, but given ongoing transmission, conveying key considerations and immediate recommendations have been prioritised. This brief is based on a rapid review of existing published and grey literature, professional ethnographic research in DRC, personal communication with administrative and health officials and practitioners in the country, and experience of previous Ebola outbreaks.

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