Ottawa comic book aims to get children vaccinated
Comparing viruses to invading extra-terrestrials, the digital comic aims to explain the role of white blood cells and vaccines to children.
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A prominent Ottawa doctor has teamed up with graphic-design prodigies to convince children to get vaccinated.
Immunity Warriors: Invasion of the Alien Zombies is a digital comic book that aims to get children thinking differently about
Comparing viruses to invading extra-terrestrials, the comic aims to explain the role of white blood cells and vaccines to children.
Dr. Kumanan Wilson, the Ottawa Hospital’s Research Chair in Public Health Innovation, got the idea when he came to speak at his son’s Grade 5/6 split class, explaining the immune system through an analogy of a space invasion.
“I thought this might be a great way to connect,” he said. “The immune system is cool. If you frame it like this, they’ll think science is amazing.”
Wilson reached out to Algonquin College. With funding from the Public Health Agency of Canada, the college suggested a video comic book and linked him to two students and one graduate.
The project started last
“Cells are round, not creative looking,” said third-year graphic design student. “We were given a bare script, which we had a chance to develop.”
Richichi said it was
“I’m empowering the kids too. You’re giving them their own choice to make, through a visual way that also educates them.”
While Wilson hopes the project fights
“It’s hard to change adults’ minds about vaccines; about anything, really,” he said. “If they’re an anti-vaxxer, you’re not going to change their mind. So, we need to start earlier.”
“A lot of parents aren’t firmly
That rings true for Richichi, 26, who admits he was so busy with last semester’s project that he caught influenza, after forgetting to get his flu shot.
The comic will soon be published on the CANImmunize app, available on iPhone and Android smartphones.