Experiences, Print, Entertainment

I Survived Ebola Multi-media Campaign

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Launched in December 2014, the I Survived Ebola campaign is using personal stories and experiences told by Ebola survivors in Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea "to inform, protect, and spread hope" while also countering stigma and discrimination. The stories are being documented and shared in video, audio, and print formats, and disseminated though media, online platforms, a mobile phone app, and other distribution channels, including being dramatised in a 5-part radio drama.

Communication Strategies: 

The I Survived Ebola campaign "leverages survivor stories from Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea to deliver vital public health information about Ebola to affected populations, and to reduce the stigma faced by Ebola survivors." By documenting and sharing stories, the campaign is designed to facilitate communication in a way that ia entertaining and practical.

Survivors share their stories through short videos, images, and text messages. The stories are being collected and shared through the I Survived Ebola website, which houses campaign videos, images, and stories, as well as recordings of the radio dramas and call-in shows. They are also being shared through social media, and people wanting to support the campaign are invited to like and share updates via the #ISurvivedEbola Facebook page and follow #ISurvivedEbola on Twitter. The videos are also available through #I Survived Ebola on Vimeo.

Examples of stories include that of Decontee Davis, a 23-year-old Liberian who overcame Ebola but lost her fiancé to the virus. "Decontee now works in an Interim Care Center for children who have come in contact with Ebola patients and are under 21 days of observation. Many of these children have lost one or both parents to the disease." In Sierra Leone, Aminata Kargbo is a university student who, after surviving Ebola because of early treatment, "has arisen as a leader in efforts to educate her fellow countrymen and women on the benefits of early treatment."

A mobile phone app has been developed to help survivors tell their ongoing stories about recovering from and continuing to live in Ebola-affected areas. The #ISurvivedEbola mobile app is designed to enable Ebola survivors "to connect with each other, share public health advice, and update the world on their post-recovery lives." The campaign is providing survivors who are sharing their stories with a smartphone installed with the #ISurvivedEbola app. The smartphones and the app were provided and developed with support from the charity fundraising website GlobalGiving.

The 5-part "Ebola is Real" Radio Drama Series is being produced and aired in Liberia and is "designed to reinforce life-saving health information about Ebola through compelling story-telling and interactive discussion sessions with listeners." The series will air in simple Liberian English across Liberia, and will be translated into 4 local languages spoken in Ebola hot spots. The drama features "realistic fictional characters who embody the everyday life experiences of Liberians." Each episode is followed by a call-in session with listeners led by a trained host. Listeners can call in using basic, widely available mobile phone technology. The call-in segments also feature interviews with Ebola experts and key opinion leaders who share information and address misperceptions about Ebola and its survivors.

Development Issues: 

Ebola

Key Points: 

The campaign is part of the broader Tackle Ebola initiative, which is working to raise awareness about Ebola and support efforts to stop the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.

Partner Text: 

PCI Media Impact, UNICEF, Vulcan Productions, Paul G. Allen Family Foundation. 

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Ebola Comic Strip Project

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In August 2014, a group of youth aged 16 to 21 participated in a comic drawing workshop in the Northern Region of Ghana. During the workshop, Ebola emerged as a priority issue, and the young people, guided by facilitators, created comic strip stories around various aspects of the disease. The resulting booklet is being distributed to help raise awareness. The initiative was implemented by Africaid WhizzKids United (WKU) based on an approach developed by Cardiff University's School of English, Communication and Philosophy.

Communication Strategies: 

Thirty young people in Ghana participated in the comic story workshop, which began with the group identifying and prioritising issues that concern them, such as Ebola and other diseases, as well as social issues such as domestic violence. The group chose to focus on Ebola, which at the time of the workshop (and of this writing) had not spread to Ghana, but is a major concern, as nearby countries such as Liberia have a high prevalence.

The comic stories were created to help communicate basic information about Ebola. "In a youth friendly way and designed by the young people themselves, the comic strips will help to explain what Ebola is; how its transmitted, how to take precautions, and why there is a need for careful treatment and isolation of patients. We want to help stop the spread of Ebola by giving people the correct facts and information about the virus - before fear and ignorance can take hold."

Using the original drawings, an award-winning comic strip artist, Stephen Marchant, produced a colourful booklet, which is being made available in English and French. In order to ensure the accuracy of the facts, a professor from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine authenticated and reviewed the information in the booklet.

The booklets are being distributed via streetfootballworld and FIFA Football For Hope members living in West Africa. It is also available for download online, and printing is being encouraged. Click here to download the booklet and read the printing instructions.

Development Issues: 

Ebola

Key Points: 

The project follows the same approach of a similar HIV-focused campaign in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, undertaken by the partners. WhizzKids United is based in KwaZulu-Natal, and uses primarily football to develop life skills and HIV prevention strategies among young people.

Partner Text: 

Africaid WhizzKids United (WKU) and Cardiff School of English, Communication and Philosophy

Source: 

Cardiff University website on December 15 2014.

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Kyunki...Jeena Issi Ka Naam Hai

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"Promoting messages that encourage positive behavior change, be it awareness about HIV/AIDS, educating the girl child, gender equity, safe motherhood, hygiene and sanitation or other key social and health behaviors, Kyunki...is proving to be a beacon of change that is paving a brighter path for the women and children of India."

Communication Strategies: 

Conceptualised in December 2004 during a polio intervention in Uttar Pradesh by a communication for development (C4D) specialist at the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and aired on the national service broadcaster, Doordarshan, Kyunki...Jeena Issi Ka Naam Hai featured a rural setting with characters reflecting the large majority of Indians who reside in rural areas. In an entertaining yet also educational format, it addressed socially sensitive issues such as the ill effects of child marriage and early pregnancy, gender equality, proper use of contraceptives, and prevention of HIV/AIDS; it also simply provided information about the importance of education, motivating children to stay in school, immunising children, and regularly washing hands with soap. It portrayed "the trials and tribulations of six unique heroes through multiple engaging plot lines..." It was based in a fictional village called Rajpura, where audiences learned about the following protagonists (described in detailed character portraits included in the first of the Related Links below, starting on page 76 of the full document):

  1. an ASHA (Accredited Social Health Activist) who conducts home visits to ensure that pregnant women have access to health services, including registration of births and ensuring visits to the local health centres by mothers and children;
  2. an ANM (Antenatal Midwife) who conducts deliveries, provides help and guidance on antenatal and post-natal health, and is responsible for routine immunisation and other aspects of health and family welfare;
  3. an AWW (Anganwadi Worker) who informs women on issues such as the importance of nutritious food, personal hygiene, care during pregnancy, nutrition of infants and children, and the importance of immunisation. (This character's name is Shabnam, a married woman in her early twenties, chided by her parents for standing up to her violent husband when he accuses her of being infertile. "Showing unconventional autonomy, Shabnam decides to end the abusive relationship and start her own life by training to become an Anganwadi (nutrition) worker in her village...Shabnam's story is representative of Kyunki...Jeena's pro-social modelling strategy. Where the Indian - and very popular - soap genre typically thrives on regressive portrayals of its female protagonists as ill-fated victims who must suffer in silence, Kyunki... promotes rights-based empowerment, exemplifying self-efficacy through characters who must navigate and negotiate the same goals and value systems that viewers grapple with in real life.");
  4. a teacher who is a positive role model encouraging children's education, especially girls' education, and creating a child-friendly environment in schools while also advocating social inclusion among the children and the community;
  5. a Sarpanch (elected village head portrayed by a woman in this serial so as to promote women's role in local governance) who provides information regarding government schemes related to health, education, and sanitation; and
  6. Meena, a spirited village girl who promotes the need for children's education and, in particular, girls' education. (See Related Summaries, below.)

 

Further information about the communication strategies and the production process that informed Kyunki...Jeena Issi Ka Naam Hai can be found at the Related Summaries area, below. But one insight about messaging is: "[I]n the Safe motherhood track - the Primary messaging was around nutrition of pregnant women, recognizing the danger signs and institutional delivery. The primary messaging became the main plot in the thematic track. The secondary messaging in the track was breastfeeding. And, tertiary messages formed an indirect or subtler form of messaging. Tertiary messages could be in the form of specific actions enacted by the protagonists without making a direct reference to it in dialogue. Or they were in the form of posters and printed slogans in the background. For instance, hand washing with soap and drawing water with a ladle was a way of habit for the main protagonists, irrespective of the messaging track. Similarly, posters, slogans, wall paintings etc. would be strategically placed in the background. For instance, in a health centre scene the ANM would be talking to a mother about immunization. To reinforce the message, there would be a poster on immunization on the wall behind her. The camera work in such scenes was done strategically to highlight and reinforce through tertiary messaging."

 

According to UNICEF, "the drama elements in Kyunki...Jeena's messaging tracks were a representation of real life barriers faced by individuals, families and communities. These barriers were critical in each and every storyline, because it was through unravelling the barriers that the messages were realized. It also made the show realistic and relatable to the audience." For example, one of the protagonists, Kamla, a village lass who is simple, resilient, and virtuous, is widowed on the first day of her marriage. "Broken and shattered, donning a widows white saree she battles societal taunts of being inauspicious. One hand she bears the burden of being a widow and on the other, lecherous advances from Prabhu, Badaghar's slimy accountant. With moral support and constant encouragement from Shabnam, Kamla finds her life mission as an ASHA worker. With a renewed sense of purpose and zeal, Kamla goes home-to-home spreading awareness about maternal and child health."

Development Issues: 

Children, Democracy and Governance, Education, Gender, Health, HIV/AIDS, Immunisation and Vaccines, Nutrition, Rights

Key Points: 

According to sources cited in "An Entertainment-Education Initiative on Television: A Glimpse into the Production Process" [PDF], nearly 153 million households in India own TV sets (2013), and it is estimated that TV programming reaches over 45% of the rural population in India, making it by far the most widespread form of communication. "Finding the most engaging, popular and entertaining format in television programming was key for UNICEF." ("The publication or parts of it may be reproduced for educational or non-profit purposes without permission from the copyright holder, providing acknowledgement of the source is made. Permission in writing is required to use this publication for any commercial purposes.")

 

Kyunki...Jeena Issi Ka Naam Hai was watched by over 145 million viewers. "Research showed it had definite impact in increasing knowledge, awareness and self-efficacy; bringing about positive attitudes, behaviours and challenging social norms." For further evaluation data as well as excerpted impact data, please see the Related Summaries, below.

 

Kyunki...Jeena is now being re-broadcast in several states on local Doordarshan Kendras. Ten thematic one hour movies edited from the show are being used by frontline workers for small group discussions. These are also being adapted for mobile phone viewing.

Partner Text: 

Created and produced by UNICEF, with research partners Johns Hopkins University Center for Communication Programs (JHUCCP) and a local research agency, Centre for Media Studies (CMS). Partly funded by government ministries such as National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) and National Aids Control Organization (NACO).

Source: 

"An Entertainment-Education Initiative on Television: A Glimpse into the Production Process" [PDF];  UNICEF India website, accessed November 20 2014; and email from Alka Malhotra to The Communication Initiative on December 1 2014.

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Pregnancy with Dignity Campaign

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Launched in October 2014, the Pregnancy with Dignity Campaign is designed to support the Campaign of Accelerated Reduction in Maternal and Child Mortality in Africa (CARMMA) by advocating for policy interventions and actions to ensure the safety of pregnant women and their babies through pregnancy and childbirth in South Africa.

Communication Strategies: 

South Africa has very high rates of maternal mortality, and lags behind targets set by the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in relation to maternal health and child mortality. According to Soul City, the intervention "is motivated by the fundamental right to human dignity enshrined in Section 10 of the South African Constitution. The concept of human dignity has become a central organizing principal in the idea of universal human rights. Dignity in terms of the campaign refers to self-worth, personal standards and how pregnant woman perceive themselves and are perceived by others."

The objectives of the campaign are to:

  • highlight the South African Government’s political leadership in the reduction of maternal and newborn mortality rates, celebrate progress made and profile best practice;
  • demonstrate Soul City’s commitment to reducing maternal and newborn deaths;
  • increase awareness around the issue of maternal and newborn mortality rates;
  • use the Pregnancy with Dignity Campaign in order to secure appropriate policy action; and
  • highlight the importance of women’s rights.

Soul City and partners identified the following critical areas and actions for safer pregnancies, which are the focus of the advocacy campaign:

Maternal waiting homes
These are dormitory-like facilities close to or at hospitals or clinics. Women come to the waiting homes close to/at the end of their pregnancy, and once labour starts they move to the health facility. Waiting homes are intended for women who live far from hospitals or clinics, who may not be able to get to the hospital quickly, as well as for women with high-risk pregnancies.

Transport plan
An Amnesty International report released at the beginning of October revealed that transport remains a major problem, with roads in some areas in such poor condition that they cannot be used when it rains. According to the report, when women and girls found themselves in labour the ambulance shortage was so profound that they were told to make their own arrangements to get to the hospital. Pregnant woman and communities should be encouraged to develop transport plans with the help of a clinic committee and community based monitors.

Extension of the child support grant to include the pregnancy period
Amnesty International proposed that government start providing child support grants to women before their children are born, as pregnant women in impoverished nations need the grant because finding employment is difficult during pregnancy; the nutritious food they need are expensive, as is the cost of transport to clinics for ante-natal care.

Cell phone airtime vouchers for pregnant women
The National Department of Health (NDoH) launched MomConnect in early 2014, which is an initiative to use cellphone SMS technology to register every pregnant woman in South Africa. Once registered, the system will send each mother pregnancy stage-based messages to support her and her baby during the course of her pregnancy, childbirth, and up to the child's first birthday. Ultimately, this initiative will contribute to efforts to improve the health of mothers and children.

In order to raise awareness of a dignified pregnancy as a human rights issue and to advocate for the above issues, Soul City and partners are developing partnerships with government departments, civil society organisations, and other stakeholders to take up the issues addressed in the campaign.

Community outreach activities are also planned in clinics and youth centres in Gauteng, which will involve a pregnant puppet called Dignity, who will be identified with the campaign and function as a discussion point to assist facilitators in initiating discussions around healthy pregnancies. A booklet will be produced for distribution at these discussions.

The campaign is also seeking to involve the media to raise awareness of the campaign and its advocacy points. A media toolkit has been developed to help journalists develop stories, and a photographic exhibition is also planned which will be based around the four advocacy points.

Soul City is also using the latest "Soul City" television series 12 to raise awareness about healthy pregnancy.

Development Issues: 

Maternal Health and Child Health

Key Points: 

Research from Soul City estimates that "for every 100 000 live births in 2012, there were 310 maternal deaths. With one million lives births in our country every year, this equates to 3100 maternal deaths around the time of pregnancy and during or shortly after giving birth. Child death rates in South Africa continue to be alarmingly high. The death rate for children under the age of 5 years is 41 deaths per 1000 live births, the death rate of infants or children under the age of one year is 27 and the death rate of newborns is 12. South Africa’s National Development Plan implores us to reduce maternal and child death rates. There is consensus that maternal and child deaths should be placed at the top of the Post –2015 agenda."

There are various preventable factors which contribute to the high rate of maternal and child mortality and these are divided into three categories:

  • Delay in deciding to seek care by the individual or the family
  • Delay in reaching an adequate health care facility
  • Delay in receiving adequate care at the facility.
Partner Text: 

Soul City Institute for Health & Development Communication and Campaign of Accelerated Reduction in Maternal and Child Mortality in Africa (CARMMA)

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Source: 

Soul City website on November 10 2014.

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Do Agric, It Pays Campaign

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Launched in January 2014, the Do Agric, It Pays campaign calls on African governments to fulfil a 2003 African Union commitment to spending at least 10% of national budgets on effective agriculture investments. The campaign is using music, celebrity ambassadors, comic strips, and an online petition to "push political leaders to adopt better policies that will boost productivity, increase incomes, and help lift millions of Africans out of extreme poverty." The campaign is being led by ONE, an international campaigning and advocacy organisation, in collaboration with a wide range of partners.

Communication Strategies: 

In 2003, African governments committed to spending 10% of their national budgets on agriculture as part of the Maputo Declaration on Agriculture and Food Security. However, as of the start of the campaign, only 8 countries had kept that promise, and "as a result, agriculture productivity in Africa is stuck at 1961 levels." The Do Agric, It Pays campaign is designed to raise awareness of this promise and the importance of agriculture, and pressure African governments to fulfil their promises through transparent and accountable budgets. The launch coincided with the 2014 January African Union (AU) summit, where heads of state gathered to discuss key development challenges. The AU has declared 2014 the Year of Agriculture in Africa.

The launch was attended by campaign ambassador, singer-songwriter D’banj from Nigeria, and campaign partners. Along with D’banj, other campaign champions include Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete, Beninois President Dr. Thomas Yayi Boni, and Côte d’Ivoire footballer Yaya Touré. Touré features in a one-minute Public Service Announcement voiced in French with English subtitles, which calls on government to improve farmers lives and agricultural output through investments.

In support of the campaign, nineteen well-known recording artists from across Africa collaborated to produce the song and music video Cocoa na Chocolate. Musicians include D’Banj and Femi Kuti from Nigeria, Congo's Fally Ipupa, Cote d’Ivoire's Tiken Jah Fakoly, Kenya's Juliani, and South Africa’s Judith Sephuma. The goal of the song is to "help rebrand agriculture, encourage youth to go online and join ONE.org and get more involved in agriculture, and ask governments to step up and improve agricultural investments, so that the youths can have a better chance of succeeding in it." The song features 19 artists from 11 different countries. Each participating artist wrote his or her own verse and there are 10 different languages in the song. Click here to view the Cocoa na Chocolate music video. The song is also available for free download on the ONE.org website, after signing the 'Do Agric' petition.

Campaign materials also include a series of comic strips developed in partnership with the Shujaaz comic series in Kenya, which appear in the Daily Nation newspaper to educate and entertain Kenyan youths. The Do Agric comic series is designed to challenge myths and stereotypes around farming, and encourage young people to consider farming as a career. The campaign organisers encourage people to download and share the Do Agric comics.

The campaign is accompanied by a report produced by ONE called "Ripe for Change: The Promise of Africa’s Agricultural Transformation". It calls on African governments to "implement policies to accelerate economic development in Africa through an African-led agricultural transformation agenda." This includes a set of policy recommendations, developed in consultation with African farmers and farmers associations. Click here to access the report and recommendations.

People can learn more about agriculture in Africa by accessing the interactive maps and can add their voice to the campaign via the online petition.

Development Issues: 

Agriculture, Food security

Key Points: 

In July 2014, ONE announced that since January, over 2 million people had joined the campaign by signing the online petition. ONE delivered the Do Agric petition signatures and policy recommendations to four Heads of State, a Vice President, and six Ministers of Agriculture in a total of 10 countries. According to ONE.org, "Presidents Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania, Yayi Boni of Benin, John Mahama of Ghana, and Mahamadou Issoufou of Niger all received the petition, and undertook to take action at home and to take the call by the two million petition signers to their peers at the [June 2014] African Union Summit...As a result, African leaders re-affirmed their intention to devote 10% of their national budgets to drive agricultural transformation...better still, they committed to achieving targets such as doubling agricultural productivity, halving post-harvest loss, increasing youth participation in the agri-business by 30%, and reducing stunting to 10% across Africa."

ONE is an international campaigning and advocacy organization of more than 6 million people taking action to end extreme poverty and preventable disease, particularly in Africa. Cofounded by Bono, the organisation works to "raise public awareness and work with political leaders to combat AIDS and preventable diseases, increase investments in agriculture and nutrition, and demand greater transparency so governments are accountable to their citizens. ONE does not raise money itself to build schools, hospitals and the like, but does its work by advocacy and campaigning so that government funds continue to flow to programs that make a difference in people’s lives. ONE works closely with African activists and policymakers as they fight corruption, promote poverty-fighting priorities, monitor the use of aid, and help build civil society and economic development."

Partner Text: 

ONE.org, Pan African Farmers Association (PAFO), ActionAid International, Acord International, Oxfam AU, East and Southern African Farmers Forum, Southern African Confederation of Agriculture Unions, the Africa Union Commission, Becho Welisho, the Alliance for Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), Agricultural Non-State Actors Forum (ANSAF) of Tanzania, East and Southern African Small Scale Farmers (ESAFF), National Association of Nigerian Traders (NANTS), and BudgIT.

Source: 

ONE website on October 16 2014.





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ANDI – Comunicación y Derechos

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Esta organización tiene por misión contribuir a una cultura de promoción de los derechos de la infancia y la juventud, los derechos humanos, la inclusión social, la democracia participativa y el desarrollo sustentable a partir de acciones en los ámbitos del periodismo, del entretenimiento y de la publicidad en cualquiera de las plataformas mediáticas.

Communication Strategies: 

El modelo de Medios de Comunicación para el Desarrollo implementado por la organización se basa en tres grandes ejes de actuación:

  • Monitoreo y Análisis: La inversión que ANDI realiza en el desarrollo de metodologías de observación cuantitativa y cualitativa para el monitoreo de contenidos periodísticos parte del principio de que es esencial retroalimentar a los profesionales y a las empresas de comunicación con una lectura crítica, rigurosa, estructurada y constructiva sobre su comportamiento editorial. Este diagnóstico permite la corrección de fallas en el proceso de investigación así como de vicios de formación o de práctica profesional. Al mismo tiempo es un medio eficaz para alertar a los periodistas de la posibilidad de acceder a nuevos conocimientos y experimentar diferentes abordajes de los temas en cuestión.
  • Movilización. ANDI interacciona diariamente con las redacciones de los medios y las fuentes de información para la definición de la agenda noticiosa y para la divulgación de noticias de referencia. Actúa como provocadora de nuevas agendas, así como mediante la atención (help desk) a periodistas y organizaciones sociales. Estas actividades están basadas en el principio de que la búsqueda de la calidad de la información pública es corresponsabilidad de reporteros, editores y fuentes de información; y que el buen periodismo reside en la diversidad de perspectivas y opiniones.
  • Cualificación. La organización busca la promoción de seminarios y espacios de capacitación donde se debatan los aspectos más importantes sobre derechos, comunicación e infancia.
Development Issues: 

Comunicación, infancia, derechos, abogacía.

Key Points: 

ANDI centra todas sus acciones en la construcción de conocimiento y la incidencia transformadora en los campos de la comunicación y del periodismo, a partir del marco de los derechos, de la democracia y del desarrollo sustentable. Estos aspectos tienen como telón de fondo el fortalecimiento de algunos de los papeles esenciales de los medios de comunicación en los regímenes democráticos:

  • Ofrecer información confiable y contextualizada para que los ciudadanos y las ciudadanas puedan participar activamente en la vida política, fiscalizando y exigiendo la promoción de sus derechos.
  • Ser pluralista en la construcción de una agenda de debates, contribuyendo a que temas relevantes para el desarrollo humano alimenten la esfera pública de discusiones a partir del posicionamiento (y la legitimación) de un mayor número de actores.
  • Ejercer control sobre el Estado y las políticas públicas colaborando para que los gobernantes (y también el sector privado y la sociedad civil) se conduzcan más responsablemente en los procesos de formulación, ejecución y evaluación de acciones y programas. 

Contacto: 

Antonio Augusto Silva

Diretor Executivo, ANDI — Comunicação e Direitos

Email: a.augusto@andi.org.br

Tel: (61) 2102 6508


Miriam Pragita
Diretora Administrativa Financeira, ANDI — Comunicação e Direitos

Tel: (+55 61) 2102.6505

Página web.

Source: 

Tomado de la página web de ANDI - Comunicación y Derechos.

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Réseaux Television Series

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Launched in March 2014, Réseaux ("Networks" in English) was a six-episode Ivorian television drama series designed to help promote safer sexual behaviours among sexually active young girls, and adult married men and women. The story follows the lives and relationships of three middle class family fathers in their 40s, and seeks to show how sexual networks develop and how they increase the risk of HIV infection for everyone in that network.

Communication Strategies: 

A survey of HIV prevalence in Ivory Coast conducted in 2011-2012 by the Institut National de Statistiques under the direction of the Ministry of Health and AIDS found the highest prevalence to be among men and women ages 40-49. The formative research conducted for the series revealed that this cohort of men tend to think they are not at risk for infection - if they think about HIV at all. At the same time, many young women, enter into relationships with older men to seek economic benefits.

For this reason, the series firstly sought to raise awareness and discussion about the fact that HIV affects not only young people, but also adults. The primary target audience was therefore adult men and women aged 35-50, living in urban settings with at least a secondary education level, average or high incomes, and living as a couple. The secondary target audience was men and women aged 20-25, who live in urban settings, have a secondary education level, low incomes, and who are single.

The specific goals of the series were to:

  • Encourage sexually active young girls and married adults to reflect on their sexual behaviours.
  • Increase HIV risk perception in sexually active young girls and married adults.
  • Encourage reflection on couple relationships and on communication around sexuality, HIV, and condoms.
  • Help sexually active young girls and married adults to overcome their fear of HIV testing.
  • Encourage reflection on the current values of Ivorian society, including challenging values that foster multiple partnerships and lack of condom use.
  • Provide role models, who adopt healthy sexual behaviours and know their HIV status, with whom target audiences can identify with.

The Storyline
Réseaux takes place in Abidjan and follows three families in the well-off residential suburb, Cocody. There is Jean-Yves, an executive in a local company and in his mid-40s, who is torn between his wife, Sara, and his young mistress, Nina, and who also occasionally engages in relations with his coworker, Anita. Along with his two best friends from university, François and Zadi, Jean-Yves is caught in a complex sexual network of current and past relationships that intersect and put him at risk of becoming infected with HIV. His friend François, a Tax Office executive, is also caught in a love dilemma between his present partner and Bintou, an old flame from university days. On the other hand, Zadi, a university professor, is a "retired" seducer and now a devoted husband to his wife, Jacqueline, and his children. He often acts as a voice of reason for his old accomplices.

Furthering the discussion through complementary media
A radio talk show based on the drama series was also aired from March 2014. It was broadcast after each television broadcast on Radio Jam in Abidjan, Agnia FM in Abengourou, Média+ CI in Bouaké, Junior FM in Man, Yackoi FM in San Pedro, and Royal FM in Yamoussoukro. In the show, a doctor who specialises in HIV/AIDS and a psychologist who specialises in relationship counseling fielded calls from listeners during the radio show. Themes of the radio programmes included: Couple communication, multiple sexual partnerships and its consequences, condom use, HIV testing, ARV treatment, and living positively with HIV.


Discussion about the show and the issues raised were also being promoted through a Réseaux website and Facebook page. Messages were also being reinforced through posters, t-shirts, and bus stop advertising.

For more information about the show and to view episodes, go to the Réseaux website.

Development Issues: 

HIV/AIDS

Key Points: 

Ivory Coast remains the country most affected by the HIV/AIDS pandemic in West Africa. According to the Ivory Coast Demographic and Health and Multiple Indicator Survey (EDS-MICS 2011-2012), while the national HIV prevalence is 3.4%, older men have the highest prevalence rates with 40-44 year-old rates at 7.7% and 45-49 year-old rates at 7.9%. As for women, their HIV prevalence rate increases with age, 3.6% among the 20-24 year-old, 5.6% among the 25-29 year-old, 6.8% among the 30-34 year-old, 7.3% among the 40-44 year-old, and 7.7% among women aged 45-49.

Formative research for the series revealed that in urban settings, at least for the cities of the study, economic needs, search for sexual pleasure and new experiences leads to intergenerational sexual relations. Thus, it is common practice for young girls to engage in sexual relationships with adult men with the aim of getting "rewards" (money to meet livelihood needs, clothes, mobile phones). Men who engage in this kind of relationship with young girls under 25 are generally 40 and over, married and have a comfortable financial situation. Their motivations are the search of new sexual experiences, the need to break with the monotony of married life, and because it makes them feel healthy.

According to JHUCCP, these relationships create an imbalance of power and leave young girls at risk of HIV/AIDS, STIs and unwanted pregnancies, as they are very often unable to impose condom use in that relationship, due in part to their financial dependence on those adult men. As a result of these high-risk sexual behaviours, the men's wives may then be infected with HIV.

Partner Text: 

Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs (JHUCCP)’s Active Prevention and Transformative Communication (PACT) programme; Health Communication Capacity Collaborative (HC3); Spot Line; and United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

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Source: 

Email received from Patricia Dailly Ajavon from JHUCCP, Ivory Coast and JHUCCP website on August 11 2014.

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My Rights, My Voice (MRMV)

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This programme aims to engage marginalised children and youth in their rights to health and education services in 8 countries: Afghanistan, Georgia, Mali, Nepal, Niger, Pakistan, Tanzania, and Viet Nam. Activities in each country are tailored to the specific contexts and conditions children and young people experience, but all come together in a wider global programme that is designed to inspire learning, innovation, and sharing of experience. Working with children and young people and those who influence their lives, MRMV is an effort on the part of Oxfam to achieve changes in policies, practices, and beliefs so as to ensure that health and education needs are met.

Communication Strategies: 

Sample activities in each of the 8 countries:

  • Afghanistan activity example: Youth representatives (at least 35% of whom are women) are receiving media and communications training so they can campaign for their health and education rights. The project helps them develop campaign materials, including radio slots and booklets on rights, legal frameworks, and support bodies - all emphasising the particular challenges facing girls and young women. Young people are using these to lobby decision-makers, generate media coverage, and underpin events such as a nationwide letter-writing campaign for schoolgirls to voice their needs to the national government.
  • Georgia overview: "Working with children and young people, parents, doctors and Georgia's Public Defender's Office (the country’s health ombudsman), My Rights, My Voice is promoting child and youth health-rights among IDPs [internally displaced persons] in the two post-conflict regions of Samegrelo and Shida Khartli (each with a quarter of its population aged from 0-16). Together with our local partners..., we are using the experiences and views of young people from these two regions to inform wider debates and national policy-making..."
  • The project in Mali teaches young people about sexual and reproductive health (SRH) rights and advocates for improved national education policies and their implementation. For example, Learning about Living (Info Ado Mali) is an e-learning programme about SRH rights, delivered via computers, radio, and mobile phone. Available online, on CD, and in hard copy (for remote areas), the programme is delivered by teachers in schools, as well as in training sessions for young people out of school. It is backed by a confidential free-to-user text messaging service, Youth Call (Weleli Ado Mali). Children and young people send questions about SRH rights and receive an answer from trained counsellors within 24 hours. A monthly prize of free airtime encourages adolescents to use the service.
  • In Nepal, 3 advocacy films around health rights were planned, filmed, and edited by 12 Nepali MRMV youth campaigners in February 2014: (i) Health For Life (about the need for health-post laboratories in Banke District); (ii) A Journey Towards Light (about the lack of solar power in health posts in Surkhet District; and (iii) Searching For Medicine (about the availability of essential medicines in Dailekh District). Click here to view a comic strip in PDF format which tells the story of the 2-week participatory video workshop during which the 12 youth campaigners learned the skills and planned, filmed, and edited these 3 advocacy films.
  • Example from Niger: "In schools and youth-led groups known as fadas, we are training young people aged 11-25 on their right to SRH and on concrete aspects such as the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases and unwanted pregnancies, early and forced marriages of girls, obstetric injuries and genital mutilation. They will also be trained in how to spread the word among their peers through child-to-child techniques. We will develop an existing 'school parliament' scheme to build pupils' experience in governance issues, participation and decision-making. The fadas will organise community discussions, drama and radio programmes on young people's rights to education and SRH, emphasising the needs and involvement of girls and young women and mothers. Dedicated phone-in discussions enable youth leaders to discuss issues with each other. Questions raised through these conversations will inform national advocacy to press the government to improve the school curriculum on SRH and gender equity."
  • Through a mass edutainment campaign, the project in Pakistan is working to change social attitudes to young people's SRH rights and to drive reform of the curriculum, aiming to reach out to young people with information and education through formal mechanisms.
  • Sample story from Tanzania: "We are helping create and strengthen student councils, providing mentoring and coaching before elections, both for candidates and their supporters. With a particular focus on girls, we are training students in leadership skills, on their right to education, and how to hold teachers and the authorities accountable for its delivery by accessing information and developing monitoring tools. Student champions from each council gather information on key issues, build joint policy positions and develop campaign materials such as letters and artwork to lobby decision-makers for educational improvements. The student body is becoming aware of its right to a quality education and how to hold schools and community leaders to account, while student leaders are learning to represent their peers effectively in community meetings and regional and national forums. In this way, we are also building leaders for the future with a good grounding in democracy and accountability."
  • In Viet Nam, one of the focal points is education: "We are building awareness among children - especially girls - of their right to education and their ability to communicate their needs. Through capacity-building events in schools and communities on gender equality and children's rights, we are raising awareness among children and parents of the challenges facing them, and particularly those facing girls. Children also learn life skills such as teamwork, communication, presentation, leadership and negotiation, so they can express their needs and claim their rights with teachers and the authorities. To make it fun, we hold summer camps and fairs where children can deliver their messages to teachers, education managers and policy-makers creatively through festivals, art, poetry, theatre, song, photography, mobile exhibitions, dialogue forums and social networking. We also run contests for children, parents and teachers to develop innovative ways of promoting children's rights in schools and communities. At inter-school workshops, they can share learning with each other and decision-makers at different level."

At times, MRMV participants from various countries come together. In December 2013, a Global Advocacy Workshop in Nairobi, Kenya, brought together 16 MRMV youth campaigners with Oxfam and partner staff to network, share, and strengthen their skills around advocating for child and youth rights to health and education services - as documented in this comic strip story [PDF]. The film that emerged from the session can be seen below or by clicking here.

 

More details and interactive functions are offered on the MRMV website.

Development Issues: 

Children, Youth, Education, Gender, Health, Sexual and Reproductive Health, Rights

Partner Text: 

Funded by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida).

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Wize up Campaign - Namibia

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Wize up is an ongoing youth campaign in Namibia that seeks to increase young people’s knowledge around sexual and reproductive health (SRH) as well as their access to services, thereby reducing early pregnancy, unsafe abortions, and increasing use of condoms as a dual protection for both HIV and pregnancy prevention. Led by Desert Soul Health and Development Communicatio and implemented with a range of partners, the campaign activities include a musical performance, production and distribution of booklets, and radio talk shows.

Communication Strategies: 

The specific objectives of the campaign are to:

  • increase knowledge and encourage correct and consistent condom use as a dual protection mechanism (HIV and pregnancy prevention) among youths;
  • encourage positive peer pressure while creating the ability to resist negative peer pressure on youth sexuality;
  • encourage delayed sexual debut among the youth while ensuring that they are informed by the time they engage in sexual activities;
  • increase parent-child communication around sexual health issues including teenage pregnancy and its consequences;
  • provide comprehensive knowledge on SRHR to youths and parents;
  • advocate for increased access to comprehensive and youth friendly SRHR services for youths in and out of school;
  • advocate for protection of young people from child abuse and age disparate sex; and
  • positively shift gender norms that make young women vulnerable to SRH problems.

The primary target audience are youths aged 15 – 24 years and the secondary target audience is parents. According to Desert Soul, parents are being targeted due to the overwhelming evidence regarding the need to strengthen the role of parents in adolescent challenges.

Following formative research into the attitudes and behaviours of youth in Namibia, Desert Soul held a message design workshop to develop messages that could be used across all campaign activities. The key messages are:

Messages to youth:
1. You have the right to SRH and this means:

  • sex has consequences and you should not have it if you are not ready to take the consequences;
  • you can decide when and with whom to have safe sex;
  • having a baby at an early age prevents you from having a fulfilling future;
  • you can decide to abstain from sex;
  • you can decide to use condoms correctly and consistently to prevent pregnancy and STIs including HIV;
  • having access to health facilities;
  • speaking to your parents and/or a trusted adult about sexual issues affecting you; and
  • avoiding age-disparate sexual relationships.

2. Young women have the right to equal involvement in SRH decision-making. Respect young women’s decisions.
3. Don’t let your friends make sexual decisions for you; be in control of your sexual life.

Messages to parents:
1. Youth look up to parents to provide them with the correct information about sex and sexuality. Talk to your children about sex including safe sex, issues of growing up (physical and emotional changes), and empower them to resist negative peer pressure.
2. Be good role models.
3. Discourage and protect young people from engaging in age-disparate sexual relationships which increase the risk of SRH problems.
4. It is the responsibility of both parents when a girl gets pregnant.

The Wize up campaign in Namibia has included the following activities:


Wize up radio programme
In 2011 and 2012, Desert Soul broadcast 2 series of radio talk shows on youth and sexual health-related topics (see Related Summary below for more information). The second season of 20 episodes contained a mini drama followed by a discussion. These were broadcast on Fresh FM over a period of 3 months. In 2014, the second series of radio programmes are being rebroadcast, but in order to reach a wider audience across Namibia, the rebroadcast is taking place over 4 community radio stations - Base FM in Windhoek in the Khomas Region, Live FM in Rehoboth in the Hardap Region, Kharas FM in Keetmanshoop in the Karas Region, and Ohangwena Community Radio in Eenhana in the Ohangwena Regions.

Wize up musical
The musical was a culmination of work done during 2013 with high schools and tertiary institutions with support from a PEPFAR Small Grant. It was hosted in April 2014 by the University of Namibia (UNAM) Drama Department and dealt with issues such as safer sexual practices, condom use, and faithfulness in a relationship. It was attended by approximately 200 people of different age groups, but mainly students from UNAM and youth groups.

Wize up youth booklet
A youth booklet on sexual and reproductive health is being developed and Desert Soul is planning to print 20,000 copies with funding from Sweden and Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad) through the Soul City Institute and WHO. The aim of the booklet is to provide comprehensive knowledge on sexual and reproductive health.

Desert Soul also used theatre outreach to tackle the issue of teenage pregnancy in the Okavango region. Three scripts were developed to deal with three specific issues: a teenage girl falling pregnant, the type of support that girls need during pregnancy, and what to do to avoid a second pregnancy. The short dramas were performed by local actors in three high schools in June 2014 and performances were followed up with direct face-to-face discussions with learners to their feedback and input.

Development Issues: 

HIV/AIDS, Reproductive Health, Youth

Key Points: 

Desert Soul developed the Wise up youth campaign based on research highlighting young people’s vulnerability to sexual and reproductive health risks. The study showed that Namibian youth understand the severity of the HIV epidemic, but still do not use condoms consistently. These findings align with national statistics that illustrate continued risky sexual behaviours among Namibian youth. For example, 64% of youth 15-19 years old have never used contraceptives, and consequently 13% of youth had a baby or were pregnant (DHS 2006).

Partner Text: 

Desert Soul, Sweden and Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad), President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), and the World Health Organisation (WHO)

Source: 

Email received from Mathew Haikali from Desert Soul on July 17 2014.

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Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights Campaign for Mobile Populations in Zimbabwe

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Action Institute for Environment Health and Development Communication (Action IEHDC) in Zimbabwe embarked on a sexual and reproductive health and rights campaign focusing on mobile populations at two border posts - Beitbridge and Chirundu. The campaign messaging focused on addressing sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) issues to reduce HIV incidences among mobile populations, primarily long distance truck drivers, commercial sex workers, and young women.

Communication Strategies: 

Beitbridge and Chirundu were selected based on the heavy traffic of people leaving and entering the country through these ports of entry to South Africa and Zambia respectively. This results in an increased risk of exposure to unsafe sexual practices due to transactional sex and sex work. Through networking and collaboration with other implementing partners along the transport corridors, this project intended to raise awareness on SRHR, MCPs, and the risk of HIV infection.


Literature review and audience research findings informed the campaign's SRHR materials production process. These included SRHR posters, a brochure, and a z-folder entitled "Sex Workers are Human Beings Too"(See Related Summaries below). To enhance understanding, these materials were translated into the vernacular languages, Shona and Ndebele. The campaign also used existing materials that were developed by Action IEHDC and its regional partners such as the television drama "Matlakala's Story", the 2 film series "Untold Stories" and "Love Stories in a Time of HIV and AIDS", and a short booklet called "You Haven’t Met Joe"(See Related Summaries below).


The community dialogues are integral to the campaign and much of the dialogues are based around the content and issues dealt with in the mass media edutainment dramas and Public Service Announcements (PSAs). The specific objectives of the dialogues are to:

  • Stimulate dialogue and debate on SRHR issues.
  • Shift the social norms, attitudes, and beliefs of mobile populations with regards to SRHR.
  • Increase knowledge of SRH services in their communities.
  • Enhance the knowledge around contraceptive use (for dual protection, safer sex, sexually transmitted infections) and where to obtain sexual and reproductive health services.
  • Develop skills and self-efficacy and the ability to discuss safe sex, contraception, and condoms with partners, parents, and other adults.
  • Increase the number of young people who seek sexual health services including HIV Counseling and Testing.
  • Increase condom use by sexually active young people.

The community dialogues are led by trained facilitators. A community dialogue is an interactive participatory communication process of sharing information between people or groups of people designed to reach a common understanding and workable solution. Unlike debates, dialogues emphasise listening to deepen understanding. They develop common perspectives and goals and allow participants to express their own views and interests. Action IEHDC trained a sizeable number of dialogue facilitators and each facilitator received a Community Dialogue Toolkit (See Related Summaries below). Facilitators mobilise groups of 20 to 30 people among mobile populations, primarily long distance truck drivers, commercial sex workers, and young women. Facilitators also register the group members on the dialogue register and select a secretary to capture the feedback during dialogues. Participants also send feedback via SMS to Action IEHDC.

The programme was monitored and evaluated to assess progress towards meeting the objectives and to measure whether desired outcomes and impacts have been achieved. Monitoring of activities also informs ongoing work and indicates areas where greater focus is required. In addition, a process evaluation will be conducted to assess how the programme was implemented and what strategies could strengthen implementation and inform future programming.

Click here to access the Action IEHDC: Monitoring Plan for Community Dialogue in Beitbridge and the Action IEHDC: Monitoring Plan for Community Dialogue in Chirundu.

Development Issues: 

Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights, HIV/AIDS, Mobile Populations

Key Points: 

The project was part of a regional initiative implemented in collaboration with Soul City Institute for Health and Development Communication. According to Action Institute, population mobility and migration contribute to the phenomenon of concurrent sexual partnerships, which is one of the main drivers of the HIV epidemic in Southern Africa. Because migrants and mobile workers are regularly separated from their permanent partners, they are more inclined to engage in short or longterm sexual relations with other partners. The programme goals are in keeping with international and regional calls to accelerate HIV prevention and to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) – most particularly MDG 3, MDG 4, MDG 5 and MDG 6. All these MDGs include aspects of SRHR or overlapping areas such as child health.

The project is informed by research done by Action into the SRHR among mobile populations in two of Zimbabwe's border areas, Chirundu and Beitbridge. Click here to download the report "Zimbabwe Research Report on HIV Prevention Among Mobile Population".

Partner Text: 

Action Institute For Environment Health And Development Communication (Action IEHDC) and Soul City Institute for Health and Development Communication

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