The Fiji Dengue project was developed in collaboration with the World Mosquito Program and District 9220 by District 9550 and the Rotary Club of Townsville Sunrise. The aim of this project is to contribute directly to the significant reduction of locally transmitted cases of (primarily) dengue fever,(secondarily) chikungunya and Zika virus. The program has released mosquitoes that carry Wolbachia – naturally occurring bacteria that, when present in the Aedes aegypti mosquito, reduce the mosquito’s ability to transmit dengue and other similar viruses between people.
This Global Grant Project, in cooperation with the World Mosquito Program (WMP) and a greater adult Wolbachia mosquito release program within the South Pacific region has provided support to undertake the project in Fiji through extensive community engagement and active public participation (including Rotarians), in the release of Wolbachia mosquitoes and monitoring of the activities throughout the Suva Nausori area. The community engagement has increased awareness, provided training to the community for mosquito releases and helped foster community acceptance of the WMP Wolbachia method.
The funding for this Global Grant project has been generously provided by the following Rotary Districts and Clubs:-
- THE ROTARY FOUNDATION
- ROTARY CLUB OF TOWNSVILLE SUNRISE
- ROTARY CLUB OF TAIPEI PEACE
- DISTRICT 9550 – AUSTRALIA
- DISTRICT 9570 – AUSTRALIA
- DISTRICT 9660 – Auckland and the PacifIc
- DISTRICT 2981 – INDIA
- DISTRICT 3011 – INDIA
- DISTRICT 3480 – TAIWAN
In-Kind support for this project was provided by Rotary clubs in the Suva area, coordinated by the Rotary Club of Suva. Without the support of all contributors, this project would not have been possible.
The Rotary Club of Suva, in cooperation and with the assistance of the World Mosquito Program have carried out a series of community mosquito releases to introduce Wolbachia mosquitoes throughout Suva.
To ensure successful implementation, the WMP team developed and provided tools and technical assistance for the Rotary Club of Suva.
The Rotary Club of Townsville Sunrise (RCoTS) developed the project scope in consultation and cooperation with the World Mosquito Program, District 9220 and the Rotary Club of Suva. RCoTS also provided Project Management support and administered finances and reporting for the project.
Throughout and following the release period, the WMP have been sampling the mosquito population to ascertain the level of establishment of Wolbachia within the wild mosquito population achieved through the addition of Wolbachia mosquitoes and interbreeding with the existing Aedes aegypti mosquito population. Through analysis of the sampled data, the WMP have established the level of Wolbachia mosquitoes within the Suva-Nausori area with promising results to date
The outcomes achieved have met the project aim. Overall the project was welcomed by the participants with positive feedback received. The tangible outcome of the project, in association with the broader World Mosquito Program in the long-term sustainable establishment of Wolbachia-treated mosquitoes which is also leading to the reduction on Dengue cases within the Suva Nausori area. As further time passes, it is expected that Dengue transmission from mosquitoes to humans will reduce providing significant health benefits to the Fiji population.