The Reseach Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) through its ongoing Japan and Philippines One Health Rabies Project (JAPOHR), launched an episode on becoming a certified rabies educator last September 16, 2022 through the End Rabies with Fumiya video series on YouTube, hosted by Japanese influencer Fumiya Sankai and co-hosted by RITM Molecular Biology Laboratory Head and rabies researcher, Dr. Timothy John Dizon.
In the episode, Dr. Dizon challenged Fumiya to become a certified rabies educator through the Global Alliance for Rabies Control (GARC) free rabies educator course (REC). Ms. Eunice Mendoza of GARC explained the course mechanics.
The REC is for anyone interested to know about rabies and share life-saving information with others. Aside from rabies, the course also covers responsible pet ownership, and primary healthcare.
“[T]here are a lot of misconceptions about rabies and wrong practices on rabies prevention. Thus, it is important to share correct information about rabies prevention. Sharing correct information about rabies prevention saves lives,” said Ms. Mendoza on the importance of the course.
The REC has five (5) modules focusing on the following topics: explaining rabies and its transmission, avoiding dog bites and rabies, caring for animals, and educating the community about rabies and bite prevention.
The REC is also self-paced, which means that enrollees may study the modules and answer the quizzes in their own time. In order to become a certified rabies educator, one has to pass the final evaluation. In the Philippines, 2,366 have already passed the course and are now certified rabies educators.
Mr. Sankai took the REC and successfully passed the final evaluation. As a certified rabies educator, he can now be part of FORCE, or the Faces of Rabies Control and Elimination of GARC. Moreover, Mr. Sankai now joins the 11,300 rabies educator course graduates across the globe.
Aside from REC, GARC offers other online courses and provides certification in the following: community coordinator, animal handling and vaccination, and rabies healthcare.
The End Rabies with Fumiya video series is part of the rabies education initiatives of the JAPOHR Project under the Science and Technology Research Partnership for Sustainable Development (SATREPS) scheme funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), and the Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development (AMED).
by Anel Azel Dimaano, Communication and Engagement Office