The Design and Use of AIDS- Posters in Kenya
The hypothesis of this study is that differences in aesthetic and communication systems confound the efficacy of posters used in efforts to control IDV-AIDS in Kenya. The study is based on empirical observation of the apparent failure of AIDS education campaigns to influence risk-taking behavior. Applying the theories and principles of design education as a filter and an analytical tool, the study takes into account the models and practice of several disciplines including communication, health education and health care delivery. The lack of substantial success of the health education approach, in general, and posters, in particular in curbing AIDS in Kenya invites questions on the efficacy of posters as a medium of communication. The study focuses on the poster, and in so , doing takes into account various parameters including perception of disease, sexuality, and design for health education as well as aesthetics and communication systems. Using archival data, relevant literature in several disciplines, participant observation as well as qualitative and quantitative analysis of data gathered in the field, the study established that conflicts among various models impact negatively on the efficacy of posters rendering them more or less ineffective in the campaign against AIDS. The field sample consisted of seventy eight users of posters and eleven health Workers in Kisumu who were interviewed to find out their opinions on the effectiveness of posters in the fight against AIDS. In general, the concerned users think that posters are not effective in controlling HIV infection and the spread of AIDS in Kenya. A few selected posters were analyzed with views to advancing recommendations for improving on the design of AIDS-posters and heal the education in general. The conclusion of the archival, experiential and observational components of this study coupled with the data gathered by report from a surveys ampleist hat posters are an inappropriate and ineffective medium for communication about IDVIAIDS if the objective of that communication is to slow down,or halt the spread of the virus.