Global Child Health Media Initiative

The Global Child Health Media Initiative aims to engage families around the world, through innovative digital media productions. We collaborate with academic institutions and global health agencies to translate evidence-based health recommendations into messages that are easily understood and shared. Our academic collaborators work at the WHO, UNICEF, the IASC, the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley School of Medicine, the Clinton Health Access Initiative and the Heidelberg Institute of Global Health. Creative partners around the world share their talents to help us deliver our messages with a little bit of magic and inspiration. This initiative is led by Maya Adam M.D.

End the Pandemic. Vaccines Work.

Remember that it is essential for everyone, including those who have been vaccinated, to help stop the spread of infection by washing hands, keeping your distance, and following local mask guidelines.

COVID-19 Vaccines:
Bringing Us Together

The COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective. When it’s your turn, we encourage you to get vaccinated as soon as possible. Remember that it is essential for everyone, including those who have been vaccinated, to help stop the spread of infection by washing hands, keeping your distance, and following local mask guidelines. Written and directed by Maya Adam MD, Faculty Lead for the Global Child Health Media Initiative.

Animations by Matt Torode. Special Contributions: Jennifer Gates, Marsha Griffin, Kelly Moore, Yvonne A. Maldonado, Amy Pisani, Till Bärnighausen, Arvind Singhal and Ann Doerr.

Note from Stanford Medicine as of March 3, 2021: Recommendations regarding mask-wearing vary by country. For these reasons, our main characters are not shown wearing masks for the entirety of this film. Please follow the guidance of your local public health agencies with regard to mask-wearing for children and adults.

My Hero
is You

This video is an adaptation of the children’s book, released in early 2020 to help educate children around the world about COVID-19. The original book was created by mental health and psychosocial support experts from the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC), the highest-level humanitarian coordination forum of the United Nations. We adapted the story into a short animated film, with input and oversight from the IASC Mental health and Psychosocial Support Reference Group, UNICEF, and the World Health Organization (WHO). The film aims to convey messages of hope, resilience, solidarity, and empowerment to children and their caregivers around the world.

Faculty at Stanford Medicine, the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, and the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley School of Medicine served as advisors on this film. The animations were done by Chaz Bottoms, Matt Torode, and Monica A. Young.

The Great Race: A COVID-19 Story

Wear a mask. Together we are stronger. Scientists are encouraging everyone to wear masks to control the spread of COVID-19. For additional info, Stanford Medicine experts discuss evidence that informed the World Health Organization’s recommendations and explain how you can help flatten the curve of COVID-19 infections: https://stan.md/2C6VrkI

​This video was created for Stanford Medicine by Maya Adam
Animation: Matt Torode.
Special Thanks: Russ Haan, Jennifer Gates, Marsha Griffin, Ryan Matlow, Amy Price and Yvonne A. Maldonado

Staying Safe when COVID-19 Strikes

What should you do if you experience symptoms of COVID-19? This short animated video illustrates practices for getting well and keeping others healthy. Get the latest news on COVID-19 testing, treatment, and tracking data: https://med.stanford.edu/covid19.html

Global COVID-19 Prevention

This short animated video was released in March 2020, in the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, to illustrate how the virus is transmitted among people and how we can prevent the spread. Get the latest news on COVID-19 testing, treatment, and tracking data: https://med.stanford.edu/covid19.html

In the News


Film Festival Awards and Official Selections

  • Vegas Movie Awards
        (Award Winner, Best Animation, My Hero is You)
  • La Femme International Film Festival
        (Official Selection, Best Animated Short, My Hero is You)
  • Satisfied Eye International Film Festival
        (Finalist, Short Animation, COVID-19, Together we are Stronger)
  • International KidsNFilm Festival
        (Official Selection, Best Animated Short, My Hero is You)
  • Paris Lift-Off Film Festival
        (Official Selection, Animations/Smartphone Films, My Hero is You)
  • Canadian Cinematography Awards
        (Finalist, Best Animation, My Hero is You)
  • Independent Shorts Awards
        (Winner, Silver Medal, Children’s Short, My Hero is You)
  • Best Shorts Competition
        (Official Selection, Best PSA, COVID-19 Together we are Stronger)
  • Cordillera International Film Festival
        (Official Selection, Short Animation, COVID-19 Together we are Stronger)
  • Satisfied Eye International Film Festival
        (Official Selection, Short Animation, COVID-19 Together we are Stronger)
  • Docs Without Borders Film Festival
        (Official Selection, Animated Films, COVID-19 Together we are Stronger)
  • One-Reeler Short Film Competition
        (Winner, Best Short Film, COVID-19 Together we are Stronger)

Selected Publications

  • Adam M, Bärnighausen T, McMahon SA, Design for extreme scalability: A wordless, globally scalable COVID-19 prevention animation for rapid public health communication. Journal of Global Health. 2020; 10. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7183247/
  • Vandormael A, Adam M, Greuel M, Bärnighausen T. A short, animated video to improve good COVID-19 hygiene practices: a structured summary of a study protocol for a randomized controlled trial. Trials. 2020 Dec;21(1):1-3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7267760/
  • Adam M, McMahon SA, Prober C, Bärnighausen T. Human-Centered Design of Video-Based Health Education: An Iterative, Collaborative, Community-Based Approach. Journal of Medical Internet Research. 2019;21(1):e12128. https://www.jmir.org/2019/1/e12128/