New Webinar Series “Don’t Forget Leprosy”

To mark the 20th anniversary of his activities, Sasakawa Leprosy (Hansen’s Disease) Initiative is launching a new awareness-raising campaign, “Don’t Forget Leprosy”, to help ensure that leprosy is not forgotten amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

This webinar series focus on the following themes (see below). Each webinar will allow for discussion among stakeholders while also drawing lessons from the ambassador’s activities using short videos.

“Don’t Forget Leprosy” Webinar Schedule

1. Introducing the “Don’t Forget Leprosy” Campaign

Date: August 4th, 2021, Report
The “Don’t Forget Leprosy” campaign officially starts on Aug. 4 with this first webinar. Guests include Dr. Poonam Khetrapal Singh, Regional Director of the WHO’s South-East Asia Region and Mr. Vagavathali Narsappa, President of India’s Association of People Affected by Leprosy. The webinar will introduce the aims of the “Don’t Forget Leprosy” campaign and will also feature the Goodwill Ambassador and other webinar participants discussing what the priorities in leprosy should be amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

2. Leprosy as a Human Rights Issue

September 29th 2021, Report
Hansen’s disease / leprosy is a medical problem but also a social problem due to the stigma and discrimination attached to the disease. In this webinar, we invite Morhan*, which is tackling with Hansen’s disease as a human rights issue for a long time, and will listen their story of various activities initiated in Brazil.

3. Elimination of Leprosy in the World

Date: December 2nd, 2021, Report
The coronavirus pandemic, which has lasted more than 20 months, has had a major impact on our efforts against leprosy, with the figures for 2020 showing a drop of between 30% to 50% in new cases from country to country. In this webinar, we invite representatives from the WHO Global Leprosy Programme, the Ministry of Health in Comors and the Ethiopian National Association of Persons Affected by Leprosy (ENAPAL) to learn more about current situation of leprosy and listen to their various activities.

4. Raising Awareness about Leprosy

~①Role of Health Professionals at the Grassroots Level
Date: January 20th, 2022. 10:00-11:30 (UTC)  Details
This webinar focuses on the efforts of healthcare professionals who work at the grassroots level to detect leprosy cases and prevent disability amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and introduce some success stories with aim of developing measures that can be adopted to suit the situation.

~②Role of Youth: Discussions shared from 3 Regions
Date: January 25th, 2022. 11:00-12:10 (UTC)  Details
We will be organizing the Global Youth Forum in March 2022 to stimulate discussions among young people working to solve leprosy issues and leaders of people’s organizations. Prior to the forum, young participants will share their thoughts on what can be done to prevent leprosy being forgotten amid the coronavirus pandemic.

5. Elimination of Leprosy: Initiatives in Asia

Date: March 2022. Details are to be confirmed.

6. Elimination of Leprosy: Initiatives in the Americas and Africa

Date: May 2022. Details are to be confirmed.