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Pictures Lend a Voice : Children Stop Diaarhoea

State and Development Partner

Uttar Pradesh, Uttarkhand

Save the Children

Problem

Solutions to pervasive yet preventable problems like diarrhoea are often designed without inputs from its most affected population - children. Policy-makers and implementers need to become better aware of children's living conditions in India to be able to prevent and treat this deadly disease more efficiently.

Conventional Solution

Child ren a re educated about preventive measures like washing hands with soap and drinking clean water throug h educational campaigns and throug h mass media. But is this enough? How can children be included in designing solutions that fit their context?

Behavioural Insights Based Solution

As part of the Stop Diarrhea Initiatives (SDI), Photo Voice project uses participatory action research methodology which is based on the understanding that people are experts in their own lives. Children lead this advocacy effort through collective action to solve a social problem that affects them the most, which is more effective than a top-down approach. Children are taught photography and asked to capture conditions that cause diarrhoea. Children raise questions like “why does this situation exist?” and how they can chanpe it. They critically discuss the imapes and initiate a grassroots social change by presenting this to school authorities and local administration. It not only encourages children's active civic participation but also enables authorities to understand a problem from the lens of a child, who is most likely to pet affected by the disease. This educates and empowers children to take active measures to safeguard their health.

Impact

A third party evaluation showed that SDI exceeded their targets across 3 broad outcomes. At least 80% households have quality diarrhoea prevention and treatment services. Also, 80% improvement in community awareness, knowledge and practices for prevention and control of diarrhoea. And lastly, there is national, state and community accountability and ownership for increased access to diarrhoea prevention and control.

"Earlier, the Community toilets were very dirty. We took pictures and they were shown in a n exhibition. It was very beneficial as people saw those photos and were very embarrassed. Now there is an extra effort to ensure toilets are kept clean." - Protima Buhiya, Student, Kolkata.

Source : Stories of Change from India's Aspirational districts - NITI Aayog publication



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