Super Chicken to the rescue

The fight against avian influenza is spreading through Southeast Asia through a new invincible character—Super Chickenâ, as he is known to English-speakers.

The Academy for Educational Development (AED), which leads an avian influenza awareness campaign in Southeast Asia for the US Agency for International Development, introduced the unlikely spokesperson in November of 2006 at national water festivals in Laos and Cambodia.

Originally developed in Cambodia during an AED workshop with government officials, "Super Moan," as he is known there, is a broad-breasted rooster with a familiar red cape and strong opinions about healthy behaviours. The rooster first appeared in public service announcements, on posters, and in booklets where he demonstrated the "hows" to preventing the avian influenza virus from appearing and spreading.

From there, the Super Chicken image was adapted in Laos with a slightly different look. Part chicken and part human, "Super Kai" serves as a credible source of good behaviours and best practices to stop the spread of the bird flu virus. Somewhat bossy in temperament, he travels on motorcycle or boat to help farmers and communities prevent bird flu outbreaks.

AED's three-year initiative will support governments, civil society groups, and private sector organizations in developing communication strategies on prevention and outbreak response related to avian influenza (H5N1) in Africa, Asia and Near East, Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe, and Eurasia.

Through television and radio public service ads and distribution of printed materials to animal and human health workers, the initiative aims to educate the public on high-risk behaviours for contracting avian flu, practical preventive measures, and how to recognize and respond to cases of bird flu in animals and humans. Target audiences include backyard farmers, small scale poultry producers, consumers of poultry, health care workers, veterinary staff, and communities living in outbreak areas.


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Editor WorldPoultry

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