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Art work participatory process to promote health, hygiene and nutrition

Our idea is to organize workshop that will overcome lack of knowledge and information parents in low-income communities have on how to cater to mental and physical development of their children in the important early 5 years. It will also give parents a chance to interact with parents from different communities and share the dream of bringing up their children in a healthy and successful manner. We aim to bring about long-term changes in child rearing practices in Nepal by changing behavior and perspectives of parents towards future growth of their kids.

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First five years of a child is very crucial in a child’ overall future development. This is the age when kids are totally dependent on their parents for health, hygiene and nutrition hence parents play a very important role in healthy and nutritious upbringing of their kids. However, this process is very personal and cultural specific especially in Nepal where there is not only geographic but also ethnic diversity, this task becomes even more challenging. We hope to empower parents to change the future of the children and help them prepare their children not only be literate but to be an aware moral and social being.
This project will focus on production of artworks and usage of media for through series of workshops and other productions of IEC materials, which will bring about attitudinal and behavioural change amongst parents and other child care providers whilst integrating their practices and ownership of the process. They play the most important role in the development of health, hygiene and nutrition of children.

Who will benefit from this idea and where are they located?

Expecting and young parents, influential elders in the families, older siblings, grand parents, day care centers teachers, traditional practitioners, Female Community Health Volunteers, members from Village Child Protection Committees, surveillance groups, Mothers Group, relevant local health posts personnel, women’s micro-credit groups (in local community they are one of the biggest organized groups) will be our target communities. Through exercise of artwork and story-telling, parents will exchange and share their practices of health, hygiene and nutrition in their day-to-day lives in artwork for first phase: 6 days sharing of practice and sharing by expert; second phase: 5 days artwork; final production of comic book to be done by artist and comic book expert. 6 district workshops will be conducted to cover geographically diverse and in all five development regions of Nepal: will be conducted in the southern plains, mountains and Himalayan regions with 50 participants in each workshop, total of 300 direct participants. Indirectly, through comic books, posters, pamphlets, hoarding boards, radio programs, graffiti it will reach to over 300, 000 people

How could you test this idea in a quick and low-cost way right now?

I could test my idea in 18 months. To reduce the costs I would conduct the program in the district which has longstanding presence of my organization. This will help me to find appropriate target group. Conduct workshop with the target groups and experts from related fields to raise awareness in their own practices and the importance of direct impact of health, hygiene and nutrition on early child development and its future impact. The participant will share their traditions and good practices. The experts in this field will listen and share their work. With the help of art instructor and facilitator they will be asked to draw their current practices of child rearing, stories, dialogues, and what they think needs to change based on their cultural and traditional practices to promote health, hygiene, and nutrition in the development of their children. With the help of artwork trainers and comic book writers, all the drawings would be collated and woven into a story to be published as comic book, print posters, hoarding boards and pamphlets with user-friendly information in local language. Test the publications in culturally similar communities so they could relate to them and provide input to make more users friendly. These comic books and posters would be distributed in schools, day care centers, regular health camps orphanages, birthing centers, health posts, child wards in hospitals for wider coverage. Similarly, strategic and common public spaces such as homes and school walls will be used to draw graffiti of the issues raised in the comic books to encourage healthy habits. Artwork from these processes would also be put up for exhibition for wider coverage. Furthermore, stories would become the basis for radio broadcast programmes and dramas in the Himalayan regions in their local language.

What kind of help would you need to make your idea real?

For implementation of this idea, I would need financial and in kind support from . 1) Cooperation and support of Village Child Protection Committee and Female Health Volunteers, Mothers’ Group and Women Micro-credit Group to identify participants and influence local communities. 2) Child Rights experts to talk on the rights of children. 3) Experts in Child Health to address the health needs 4) Child Nutritionist on healthy and balanced local nutrition and prevention of junk food. 5) Professional from WASH/health sector for hygiene and vaccines as the basic rights of children. 6) Baby sitters for children of participants. 7) Publishers for comic books, posters, pamphlets. 8) Producers for hoarding boards, 9) artwork trainers and graffiti painters. 10) Translators in various local languages. 11) Producers of Radio Broadcast in different regions and languages.

Is this an idea that you or your organization would like to take forward?

  • Yes. I am ready and interested in testing this idea and making it real in my community.


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