This Ebola Communication Preparedness Implementation Kit (I-Kit) provides national and local stakeholders, as well as program managers, with key considerations and a roadmap for instituting and implementing critical, relevant, practical and timely communication for responding to the threat of an Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) outbreak. The I-Kit guides countries in social and behaviourr change communication (SBCC) and risk communication activity planning, including communication plan development for every stage of an Ebola response.
In their 2011 publication, ‘Communicating with children’, UNICEF consider how children process and experience learning, using the example of their ‘Let’s Wash Hands’ poster.
“The poster “Let’s Wash Hands” was developed for school-aged children during a capacity-building workshop on holistic child development in Indonesia.The group chose a girl to be the model for a photo-based poster; broke down steps for a correct hand-washing sequence (wet, soap, scrub well, rinse); used a catchy rhyme with each photo; and finished with the girl proudly holding out her clean hands. Supplementary activities included adapting the rhyme to a song to be sung at school or at home when washing hands.The poster integrated hygiene, early learning through rhyme and building self-confidence, especially of girls. It can be used as a model to teach a variety of skills to children as well as adults.”
For more details visit: http://www2.unicef.org:60090/cwc/cwc_58608.html
In response to the conflict in Rwanda and the Great Lakes region, the BBC World Service established its Lifeline Service in 1994, broadcasting news and factual material from the United Kingdom gathered by its locally situated reporters in Rwanda, Burundi and the Great Lakes region.
The service, which is currently being supported by DFID, has a mixed format that comprises news, sports, human rights issues, tracing messages, music and a drama produced in Kigali by the NGO Health Unlimited.
The service was commenced in light of the clear need within the region for fair and accurate news and factual broadcasting.
Biased local broadcasters have been widely implicated in the genocide of the Tutsi that occurred in Rwanda, with the Hutu- run Radio-télévision libre des mille collines (RTLM) being particularly active.
To counter hate radio of this kind funding is increasingly being channelled towards media activities that promote free, fair and accurate reporting. Many such interventions are international in scope due to the absence of suitable partner organisations in country.
However, since it does not rely upon local broadcasting partners, the BBC is able to exercise its policy of impartiality effectively with little or no interference from external sources. The quality of its news is high.
Despite this, there are concerns associated with this type of international media response to conflict because little local capacity tends to be built through such interventions and they are generally not sustainable in the long term.
 DFID’s ‘Working with the Media in Conflicts and other Emergencies’ 2000
Following the earthquake that hit the Colombian town of Armenia in January 1999, a local NGO, Viva la Ciudadanía, has started a multi-media project to aid the reconstruction, involving radio, TV and newspapers. A model that is earmarked for peacebuilding as well.
Radio is the major component with news and magazine programming, plus a soap opera called Los Nuevos Vecinos (Our New Neighbours). The soap’s writers are a creative group of five people living in the camps or temporary housing. Focus groups are being created in different parts of the affected area to discuss what needs to be said by the characters in the soap opera. The actors are also people of the affected community.
In addition, there are community correspondents who have been trained in radio and writing workshops so they can provide copy for the radio magazine and the newspaper. These correspondents are drawn from a wide range of society – youth groups, senior citizens’ clubs and community leaders.
Phone-ins encourage listeners to comment on what they have heard. The project was started to counter the lack of information about the reconstruction process, with the national media concentrating only in corruption and other dramatic events.
The project organisers have succeeded on enlisting commercial and community radio’s co-operation in broadcasting the programmes at the same time, so the entire affected area is being reached. The plan is to use this project as a model for the peace-building process elsewhere in the country.
For more information see: http://viva.org.co/
 DFID ‘Working with the Media in Conflicts and other Emergencies’ 2000 http://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/C8ECCFBA7563F7F4C1256D570049D0B4-DID-mediaandconflict-aug02.pdf
Participatory Theatre Gains Momentum, New Vision and Renewed Focus
Workshop Charts a Path for Strengthening Participatory Theatre as a cross-cutting Communication for Development Platform
LUSAKA, Zambia, 16 July 2015 (UNICEF) – More than 70 participants from 18 countries — across six continents — gathered here last week to share, learn, and sharpen strategies on how participatory theatre can engage communities to claim their rights and address specific development and humanitarian challenges.
The seven-day workshop closed over the weekend in a ceremony with representation from Zambia’s Deputy Minister of Tourism and Arts, Hon. Esther Banda, MP, Chairman of the National Arts Council, Mulenga Kwepepe and senior UNICEF officials. Throughout the week, workshop participants deliberated on principles and standards for raising the quality of practice. These were captured in a Lusaka Declaration outlining detailed commitments of theatre practitioners for using participatory theatre as an approach for community engagement, behaviour change and social transformation.
“Participatory Theatre can be a potent medium to address power imbalances in communities which prevent them from fulfilling their basic rights. It can be applied in conflict-affected settings to address underlying causes of tensions and build social cohesion; in post emergency situations to help reduce trauma and in development contexts to tackle harmful socio-cultural norms and practices such as child marriage, female genital mutilation and open defecation,” said Kerida McDonald, UNICEF’s Senior Advisor for Communications for Development at its New York City-based headquarters. “But it is important to ensure that we are not un-wittingly supporting theatre groups to practice one-way messaging in the name of ‘edu-tainment.’”
UNICEF is partnering with the Zambian-based Africa Directions, a youth theatre non-governmental organization (NGO) to lead a multi-country mapping exercise and the development of guidelines and tools to ensure that participatory theatre is used effectively to empower communities examine their realities, express their opinions and identify collective solutions to issues affecting them.
Said UNICEF Zambia Representative Hamid El-Bashir Ibrahim, PhD., “In Zambia, we are supporting participatory theatre in schools and communities to address a number of issues, including school dropout and teenage pregnancy. We welcome this workshop which is focusing on defining standards of practice and addressing critical issues such as evaluation. If theatre can bring about results for children, create spaces for them to speak and be heard, and advocate for their rights and life-saving needs, then we need to find mechanisms to scale it up and make it sustainable,” said El-Bashir.
The workshop, which was held from 05-11 July, invited expert guest speakers to provide an overview of the historical and current status of participatory theatre including Hjalmar Jorge Joffre-Eichhorn who shared findings from his recently conducted global literature review of participatory theatre; Alessandro Conceição from Brazil’s Centre of the Theatre of the Oppressed; and Professor Dickson Mwansa Zambian Open University. Participants met in groups to consider the strengths, opportunities, weaknesses, and threats for participatory theatre and suggest recommendations for strengthening the practice.
“The workshop has provided an eye-opener for all of us. Hearing of country experiences from other African nations and across the world has broadened our awareness of a wide range of models for supporting participatory theatre: through drop-in centres, schools, youth centres, university departments and religious networks. There are also exciting innovations we are learning about such as combining participatory theatre with live TV and doing legislative theatre to influence the development of new laws and policies,” said Africa Directions Excecutive Director, Mark Chilongu.
In partnership with UNICEF Communication for Development Section at the organization’s New York headquarters, Africa Directions will be using the outputs of the workshop to develop a global guide for participatory theatre practitioners. The organization will also begin to serve as a regional centre to improve professional exchanges, networking and capacity development to strengthen the contribution of the application of theatre for development. Funding for the initiative has generously provided to UNICEF by the Government of the Netherlands as part of its global peacebuilding initiative, which in many countries UNICEF is implementing in partnership with the Search for Common Ground.
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere. For more information about UNICEF and its work visit: www.unicef.org/zambia.
Source: Kerida McDonald, UNICEF