Gender Matters: Voices from the Field
Women are critical in the fight against polio. From reaching every child with polio vaccines to ensuring their children receive the protection they deserve, women are at the heart of polio eradication efforts.
In GPEI’s immunization activities, women frontline workers have increased the effectiveness of health service delivery. In many settings, only women can access households to vaccinate children. Female social mobilizers have improved attitudes toward polio vaccination and the perceptions of risks associated with the disease. Women on the frontline communicate directly with female caregivers and indirectly with other women in the community. The recruitment of local women, in particular, enables a larger capacity for trust.
The Global Polio Eradication Initiative has continually developed and adapted local strategies to engage women in the critical decision to vaccinate their children – as caregivers of children and as the workers on the frontline of eradication.
The progress the polio programme has witnessed in the past years would not have been possible without the hard work and commitment of courageous women who are dedicated to protecting children and making polio history.