January 24, 2022

Pathways Colombia

“Pathways Colombia” is an immersive virtual reality (VR) experience about the peace process in Colombia. As Colombia commemorates the 5th anniversary of the signing of the 2016 Final Peace Agreement which brought an end to more than five decades of conflict between the former FARC-EP, the film focuses on the challenges and opportunities of peace consolidation in Colombia, including reintegration, security, and reconciliation efforts. “Pathways Colombia” comprises three episodes that will give you an impression of how it is like to be on the ground in Colombia and introduce you to the personal story of former combatants as well as local communities and victims of the conflict. Through their voices, the VR experience illustrates achievements and obstacles in the reintegration and reconciliation process, while at the same time bringing to light persisting security challenges and resilience of all those committed to achieving sustainable peace in the country.

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February 17, 2022

Bike Ambulances to improve Emergency Obstetric Care in Rural Areas

Maternal mortality and morbidity rates remain high in Cote d’Ivoire. It is estimated that more than six women out of a thousand are dying while delivering birth, while 0.7% of the women of childbearing age have fistula in the country (MICS, 2016). While the strengthening of the health system is taking place, women in the country, especially in the rural area, stay vulnerable to the high risk of maternal death and morbidity. From behavioral perspectives, the barriers that leads to the three delays–(1) deciding to seek care; (2) identifying and reaching a medical facility; (3) receiving adequate and appropriate treatment may include the following (Cichowitz et al., 2018): Factors related to the first delay: social norms (community prefers to deliver at home), limited transportation and health care services at night, and negative experience in hospitals in the past (lack of trust). Factors related to the second delay of reaching a medical facility: a lack of available transportation, long travel times, and perception of high medical costs (walking 36.5%, car 34.6%, bus 13.5%, and motorcycle 13.5% in case of a study in Tanzania). In this context, this rapid prototyping initiative seeks to develop a new low-cost, safe transportation for women to prevent maternal mortality and morbidity in rural areas, by tackling the barriers that often lead to delay of emergency obstetric care (EmOC). It also aims to collect and utilize the GPS data/information of the bike ambulances to enable regional hospitals and the government to make better decisions in providing care, utilize hospital ambulances efficiently, and enhance communication between the care-seeker and care-provider.
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