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The Gender Roles, Equality, and Transformations (GREAT) Project is an evidence-based international development intervention that succeeded in improving gender norms related to sexual and reproductive health and gender-based violence in Northern Uganda. This guide is designed to build on this success by providing organisations working in sexual and reproductive health with the tools and instructions they will need to implement the GREAT project in other communities.

The GREAT Project uses a set participatory activities to get adolescents and adults thinking and talking about how to help girls and boys grow into healthy adults who live in communities free of violence that encourage equality between men and women.  These activities are as follows: 1) Community Action Cycle: simple steps to bring communities together to take action to improve adolescent well-being; 2) a radio drama: a serial drama with stories and songs about young people and their families living in Northern Uganda; 3) Village Health Team (VHT) Service Linkages: orientation to help VHTs offer adolescent-friendly services; and 4) Development and use of a Toolkit: using engaging stories, lively activities, and board games.

The guide is broken down into sections which include sections on each of the GREAT project components or activities outlined above. Within each component chapter, the guide provides an overview of the component, suggested activity sessions, and tracking forms for tracking implementation progress. The guide also includes the handouts referenced throughout the guide.

The chapters in the guide are as follows:

  • Introduction: Using the How-To Guide
  • Chapter I: The GREAT Journey - The principles and four key components (as described above) are briefly presented here.
  • Chapter II: Preparing to Implement GREAT - This chapter will lead you through the preparatory work that will lay a strong foundation for implementing GREAT. It includes selection of the implementation area and community actors, obtaining stakeholder buy-in, and preparing for and running the various orientations and trainings.
  • Chapter III: The Community Action Cycle - The Community Action Cycle is how GREAT mobilises communities to reflect on gender equality, prevent violence, and promote adolescent sexual and reproductive health (ASRH). The Cycle is your entry point into work with the community. A tested model of community mobilisation that has been used and adapted around the world (Save the Children, 2002), the Cycle outlines a participatory process for a core group of community members to engage the government, community members and other stakeholders in action to address gender inequity, gender-based violence, and sexual and reproductive health for adolescents.
  • Chapter IV: The Oteka Radio Drama - The Oteka Radio Drama is a rich, multi-character story told in 50 episodes of 30 minutes each. Every episode touches on one or more aspects of gender, power, and sexual behaviour, and follows several characters – adolescents, their families and community leaders – as they build and maintain relationships, and respond to challenges in their everyday lives. The value and effects of the drama are enriched when programme implementers organise and support discussion among listeners, as described in this chapter.
  • Chapter V: VHTs and Youth-Friendly Services - GREAT does not provide health services. Rather, it works with existing Village Health Teams (VHTs) and health centres to ensure that volunteers and staff have the knowledge and skills to provide youth-friendly and confidential information, counselling, referrals, and service to adolescent girls and boys. This chapter outlines how GREAT makes sexual and reproductive health services more friendly and accessible to youth.
  • Chapter VI: The GREAT Toolkit - The GREAT Toolkit is the collective term for several interactive materials — a board  game, flipbooks, activity cards and discussion guides—that adolescents can use with their peers to learn about and take action on sexual and reproductive health, gender, equity, and gender-based violence. The purpose this orientation is to expose group leaders to the stories, activities, and games in the toolkit; demonstrate their proper use; and allow leaders to ask clarifying questions.
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