New Delhi: On the eve of Anti-leprosy Day, Sasakawa-India Leprosy Foundation (S-ILF) launched #YesICan campaign to generate awareness amongst the masses. The campaign aims to create awareness around the disease and garner support for leprosy warriors to help them do their job better. Launched in English, the campaign video highlights the role of ASHA workers in the active detection of leprosy cases.
Sharing his thoughts on the campaign Tarun Das, Chairman Sasakawa-India Leprosy Foundation said, “Similar to leprosy those affected with COVID also faced stigma which is primarily from the fear of unknown.This can be addressed by educating people about the disease. Conceptualized by S-ILF, #YesICan is a video campaign to make people realize that they can be a part of the fight against leprosy and bring positive change in the attitude and behaviour towards persons affected by leprosy and their families. In the biggest testimony to the success of the campaign, Sasakawa-India Leprosy Foundation’s scholars who are from leprosy background are escortingCOVID patients without any fear or discrimination.”
Congratulating Sasakawa -India Leprosy Foundation on the launch of the campaign video, Vagavathali Narsappa, President, Association of People affected by Leprosy (APAL) said, “Awareness generation is very important. Leprosy also has the same stigma associated with it as COVID. We have to generate awareness against Leprosy like we did for COVID. Initially, people were scared of COVID, now it is normal as people are aware. The fact that leprosy can cause disabilities makes awareness and timely treatment vital. I am confident that the initiative taken by S-ILF and the launch of flipchart will together help to generate awareness amongst the masses which will lead to early diagnosis and treatment.”
Lack of public awareness about leprosy and myths surrounding it is one of the major challenges that India is facing in its fight against the disease.This results in stigma and discrimination of those affected by the disease. Sasakawa – India Leprosy Foundation(S-ILF) is looking forward to sensitizing each and every Indian citizen so that they can spread the word and contribute towards the elimination of stigma leading to a more inclusive and empathetic society.