Furaha Asani is a researcher, mental health advocate, teacher, and writer with a research background in respiratory immunology. Furaha’s current research interests lie in the transdisciplinary field of science pedagogy. As a writer she focuses on healthcare, issues affecting higher education, and science in pop culture. Furaha uses writing as her main medium to spread messages about the importance of social justice and equity, and she has written for such platforms as New Scientist, Star Trek, Black Ballad, The Outline, Times Higher Education, The Runnymede Trust, and Media Diversified amongst others. Furaha is a non-denominational Christian who believes that faith and science are not mutually exclusive. Having had the privilege of receiving all the recommended vaccines on the childhood vaccination scheme in northern Nigeria in the late eighties, she is passionate about using her voice to build vaccine confidence and respectfully engage with anti-vaccine sentiment that has been born from medical racism.
Uprooting a fear without replacing it with helpful information is redundant. Therefore, it is time to shift focus from merely quashing anti-vaccine sentiment to intentionally building vaccine confidence. Nigeria provides a heartening case study on how this can be achieved.