The 2020 International Social and Behavior Change Communication Summit, postponed last week due to the global coronavirus pandemic, has been rescheduled for Oct. 19 to 23 in Marrakech, Morocco.
The Summit is expected to draw more than 1,500 SBCC practitioners from scores of countries around the world.
The Summit’s Secretariat, led by the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs, has worked diligently in the past week to find a date that works for the venue and the hotels where attendees have reservations. Both registrations and hotel reservations will be honored on the new dates.
Postponing the Summit, which had been scheduled for March 30 to April 3, was “not a decision taken lightly,” the Secretariat said last week, but one made with the safety and well-being of attendees in mind.
The situation surrounding COVID-19 is still developing and the organizers recognize the dates could shift again, but that planning for October at is a reasonable way to proceed. “We will, along with the rest of you, be monitoring the situation closely and will continue to consult with the Moroccan government and follow their national guidance as planning moves forward,” they wrote today.
The coronavirus has continued to spread across the globe, with travel restrictions becoming more commonplace. When the Summit was officially postponed on March 3, there had been more than 92,000 cases reported around the world and more than 3,000 deaths. COVID-19 was first reported in December in Wuhan city in China’s Hubei province.
As of today, there have been nearly 130,000 known cases reported worldwide and more than 4,700 deaths.
Attendees who have logistical questions about the new dates should consult the FAQs on the Summit website. There will be two webinars on COVID-19 and SBCC held during what would have been the Summit week, on Tuesday, March 31 at 7:30 a.m. EDT and Thursday, April 2 at 7:30 a.m. EDT. More information on these will be available on the Summit website.