In this interview, acting head of the Communication for Development Unit of UNICEF prior to the 2014 Ebola outbreak in Liberia, Adolphus Scott describes how conflicting messages circulating in the community hindered the Ministry of Health’s attempts to control the virus. He explains the process of coming up with one set of messages among key actors that was then distributed in the form of posters, short dramas, and radio messages. Scott also tells about the troubling and limiting narrative against the government airing on about 22 radio stations toward the beginning of the outbreak saying that the government to secure more funding fabricated Ebola. Eventually, he says, they came on board and worked with UNICEF and the Ministry of Health to circulate their Ebola is Real program, a campaign complete with a popular song around July 2014. Scott also provides a brief overview of the new Incident Management System’s Social Mobilization Working Group, which worked to engage communities in the fight against Ebola. He also stresses the importance of conversing with and learning from community leaders early on and justifies the regret he feels about how late in the timeline the organizations met with religious and traditional leaders.
During the Ebola outbreak in Liberia, Adolphus Scott worked on public health messaging in coordination with the Health Promotion Division in the Ministry of Health. Having spent twelve years working with UNICEF (United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund) in Liberia, Scott served as the acting head of Communication for Development Unit of UNICEF prior to the Ebola outbreak. His work dealt with issues of child vaccination, nutrition, education and protection.