SEAOHUN is happy to announce the long-awaited results of the OHW-NG - SEAOHUN COVID-19 Digital Awareness Challenge.
One of the SEAOHUN’s major roles is building capacities of the future workforce to prevent, detect and respond to health threats. Despite this year’s unusual circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic limiting in-person activities, the SEAOHUN committed to offer opportunities for future One Health Leaders in the region to learn to incorporate a One Health approach to address the pandemic. The contest, introduced for the first time in 2020, aimed at engaging Southeast Asian students in educating their communities about COVID-19 and promoting risk-reducing behavior through digital platforms. The activity was supported by the USAID One Health Workforce Next Generation (OHW-NG) project.
The organizers were impressed with the energy and creativity of the participants. Over 200 students across six Southeast Asian countries (Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam) submitted 110 posters, flyers, and videos to raise awareness of their communities on COVID-19. Most participants (over 60%) came from Malaysia. In addition, high number of participants (nearly 10%) from Cambodia became a pleasant surprise as the One Health University Network in this country is new and the One Health Students Club has yet to be established.
A team of judges representing all participating countries and the OHW-NG Global Consortium expressed difficulties in shortlisting 110 submissions down to 13 finalists as the submission content was original, creative, and informative. The finalists were teams from Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Vietnam. In the end, the judges made a tough call to decide only four winners:
1st prize video: Team “Estungkara,”
Indonesia (Rayhan Naufal, Maria Angelica Maryatmo, Jasmine Rizal Saphire, Michelle Virginia Ongko)
2nd prize video: Team “Wismaya,”
Indonesia (Savana Annisa Rahmah, Fitria Yuliana, Faisal Amathistka, Lutfi Aditya Nugraha, Muhammad Naufal Prayitno Putra)
I was amazed, speechless, and beyond happy when I heard about the result. It was unexpected and still felt unbelievable to me. Winning the contest helps to boost my confidence, but I realize that there are more responsibilities ahead of me in terms of educating the public about zoonosis and One Health approach.
– Ainaa, COVID-19 Digital Awareness Challenge, One Health Student Competitor, Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin, currently in her 4th year of Bachelor of Animal Production & Health.
SEAOHUN conducted short interviews with the 1st prize award winners to learn more about their experience with the competition.
How did you learn about the contest?
Ainaa: I came to know through MyOHUN’s account on Instagram.
Estungkara team: Our professor texted us on WhatsApp and asked us to join.
Was it difficult to come up with your poster or video?
Ainaa: It was quite hard since I didn’t take any classes related to graphic design and editing before. I was doing something for university clubs and society, but I would say that I am just a beginner.
Estungkara team: In our team, we have a videographer, Ray. Also, Michelle has experience in making videos for her YouTube channel.
How did you research for correct information? Who was helping you?
Ainaa: I consulted with the websites of trusted agencies, World Health Organization (WHO), and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Then, I tried using layman terms to help people understand better.
Estungkara team: In our team, it was Maria Angelica’s and Jasmine’s role to write scientific content for the video. They read a lot of journals and looked at the WHO website.
Did you learn anything for yourself during this competition?
Ainaa: I had learned that it is critical for each of us to play our roles effectively to stop the spread of the virus. I also polished my skills in making posters.
Estungkara team: We learned to be opened minded to the opinion of others, to collaborate with each other. We also learned a lot about COVID-19 and how to influence others through on-line platforms.
What did you feel when you learnt that you won the first prize? Did you expect it?
Ainaa: I was amazed, speechless, and beyond happy when I heard about the result. It was unexpected and still felt unbelievable to me. Winning the contest helps to boost my confidence, but I realize that there are more responsibilities ahead of me in terms of educating the public about zoonosis and One Health approach.
Estungkara: We all jumped of joy together. We couldn’t believe in the beginning, because we have submitted it at the last moment and there was no time for perfection.
Most of the creative submissions were in English. We asked the winners how they were planning to share them with their local communities? Team Estungkara wants to make subtitles in Bahasa and share it widely in Indonesia. Ainaa suggested trying to translate her poster into Malay.
We learned to be opened minded to the opinion of others, to collaborate with each other. We also learned a lot about COVID-19 and how to influence others through on-line platforms.
- Estungkara team, COVID-19 Digital Awareness Challenge, One health
The competition helped in promoting One Health concept. In addition, the winners are very determined to continue applying One Health approach after graduation. Most of the winners aspire to do a Master’s degree to learn more about One Health. Maria Angelica and Jasmine dream of working in a national or international organization addressing One Health issues. Michelle plans to be a veterinarian and educate pet owners about One Health. Ray, as a Policy and Governance student, promises to promote One Health-related policies. Ainaa said: “I hope that even without all the events, activities, and competitions I am still able to give back to the community.”