ACTIVE SINCE: Since 2017

Supporting Behavior Change and WASH Projects with the NALA Foundation

Together with the NALA Foundation and the Ministry of Health in Ethiopia, we are developing community-based solutions to control and eliminate schistosomiasis. 

Implementing behavioural change interventions to complement mass drug administration for Neglected Tropical Diseases in Ethiopia

NALA stands for NTD Advocacy, Learning, Action and is an Israeli non-governmental organization that has been operating in Ethiopia since 2008. It takes a unique and, most importantly, community-based approach, mainly focusing on health education, WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) and treatments to achieve sustainable behavior change and ultimately control and eliminate neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). 

In 2017, the Merck/NALA Foundation was formed in collaboration with the Ministry of Health of Ethiopia to control and eliminate schistosomiasis and other NTDs in the Bench Sheko & West Omo zones (previously Bench Maji zone) in South West Ethiopia. This region is known for being one of the toughest NTD hotspots. Special attention and implementation support has been given to areas in which the disease burden remains high despite regular mass drug administrations (MDA). Tailored, community-owned health education and WASH programs have been designed and implemented to reduce prevalence levels and move from control to elimination to create a proven success model. 

The impact assessment has shown a significant reduction in the prevalence of Schistosomiasis. Based on the findings, the regional team note success in the strong partnership established with the Mizan Tepi University for research and report changes in the behavior of school children and their respective families as well as high levels of community involvement and effective collaboration with local government structures. 

Geographic Reach
Disease Area
  • Infectious and Parasitic Disease
See Disease Areas
Additional resources