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SING ♪ LEARN ♪ LOVE

Parental Songs at Chaupals. Focusing on mothers within the rural villages of India (starting with villages of the highest infant mortality rates), we shall raise awareness of basic, essential and potentially lifesaving parenting skills through the mediums performance: focusing on song and dance. Educational songs written by health care professionals will provide simple content and much needed parenting education for thousands of illiterate adult villagers within India’s poorest communities. With these basic parenting skills, mothers can potentially save the lives of their children; preventing thousands of needless deaths each year. The performances will focus on celebrating births and enhancing a young child’s life whilst aiming to

Photo of Taz Fear

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The Performance

Our aim is too work alongside Indian culture, and in doing so, these performances will take place at Cchaupals’ (evening public meeting spaces). Within these Chaupals, villagers (aiming at mothers in particular) will be presented with educational performances; acted out by a group of volunteers. These performances will require community involvement; upon hearing the songs, village spectators will be encouraged to sing and dance along until all are joining in - After all it does take a community to raise a child.


The Leaflet

Once villagers have participated, enjoyed and learnt from the performance they have experienced, they will be given a simple ‘step-by-step illustration leaflet’. This leaflet will revise what they have learned by visually communicating the parenting skill; acting as a prompt or reminder if needed in future.
*We want to emphasize that these leaflets will not be ‘written’; it is imperative that we deliver clear design illustrations that are engaging and easy to follow.
 
The Domino effect:
 
From our research we know India has 287 million illiterate adults, the largest population globally and 37% of the world total, *report by U.N. Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, also known as UNESCO.
These numbers decrease even more getting closer to rural villages. As mentioned it is crucial that we do not provide information that is complex, or in written format; we want our information to be followed easily in an immersive, visual and intellectually stimulating way.

Our concept focuses at North India's Chaulpals as a place of stimulive and seemingly efforless learning; we want to ensure that all song content is formal and factual whilst being engaging and catchy. We know that if this is accomplished then the songs will ricochet to neighboring villages and communities in a domino effect.
If we succeed  then basic parenting education will spread through communities across India; teaching mothers the best lessons in life; how to keep their child safe and help them to thrive.

HealthCare workers will generate appropriate content for the lyrics; each song will teach a different aspect of essential early year parenting.
These songs will then be taught to volunteering groups, who will then perform to villages across India - Prioritizing areas of high infant mortality rates first.
Each volunteering group will have five villages to perform to: the more volunteers, the more villages we can penetrate basic essential parenting skills to.
 
An example of how this could work:

‘Volunteer Group A’ will teach one song per week at Chaulpals; teaching the selected song to a new village as the week progresses (Monday to Friday).
‘Village 1’ on Mondays
‘Village 2’ on Tuesdays
‘Village 3’ on Wednesdays
‘Village 4’ on Thursdays
‘Village 3’ on FridaysAt the end of each village performance day; illustrated leaflets will be handed out for villagers to ‘see’ what they have learnt and to keep for future reference.
 
Once Volunteer Group A has taught the song to all five of their villages, they will have the weekend off and start a teaching a new song the following Monday
 Starting the over cycle again.

 

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

Parents: Mainly mothers - providing and equipping them with basic, yet essential, parenting skills; so they may improve the wellbeing and health of their children. Children under the age of 5: High Infant mortality rates should drop and death rates during childbirth should reduce. Communities: By becoming more aware of good parenting practices, thousands of villagers will be provided with an understanding of basic and important parenting knowledge; in turn this will be passed on future generations and neigbhouring communities.

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

We will research both current and previous projects; in which a message was successfully, quickly and effectively passed on through villages in India. Ask people who understand firsthand about India’s village culture(s). Ask these people for feedback on our concept and if they have any improvements or changes they would like to see implemented. Proto-typing: videoing an example preliminary song and create an illustrated step-by-step leaflet to accompany it. The leaflet can then be given and tested on those who have little parenting experience or literacy education; we could then ask how easy and effective the leaflet was to learn from.

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

We will look for partnerships with existing organizations that focus on child development and female empowerment in India. A possible partner would be ‘Care India’ - an organization that has been working within India for over 60 years focusing on ending poverty and social injustice. One their programmes relates to our idea: ‘Join my Village’ aims to improve maternal and newborn health whilst involving parental males. We would also be looking for approval and support from India’s ‘Ministry of Women and Child Development’.

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.

26 comments

Join the conversation:

Comment
Spam
Photo of Dean James
Team

great idea taking something already popular and highly influential and putting a message in it is a great idea, putting the idea with the leaflet is also good as it gives an opportunity to put extra information in the hands of people

Spam
Photo of Emmanuel Agu
Team

I like the idea of using practical performances to bring together a community, and everyones mood lightens up when a good music is been played.
I see a great potential in this and learning through singing is a efficient way to draw people in. As it is an interactive form of communication, it might also build the confidence of the community as a whole and break the barrier of individuality and personal status.

Spam
Photo of Julia Starzyk
Team

Thanks Emanuel. I think your fraze of 'everyones mood lightens up when a good music is being played' is a key here. This summerised everything.

Spam
Photo of Diini Omar
Team

Thanks Emmanuel for the Compliment .

Spam
Photo of Ana Paula Menezes
Team

Thanks, Emmanuel! Not only we want to bring people knowledge by also giving them joy, but also we really thought about ways of doing this and still incorporate the local culture, instead of imposing new ways into these villages and breaking with their traditions. Our aim is to be respectful and work WITH the community.

Spam
Photo of Kastriot Hasani
Team

A good song will get everyone joining along. my question is who will approve of the lyrics of the songs. Also how could you encourage locals to write a song of their own that they could sing/perform in front of the locals?

Spam
Photo of Julia Starzyk
Team

We would like to get healthcare people out to village to work together with local musicians to create the song. What do you mean by approving the song please ? I think people will be approving this. Villagers. If the song will stay with them and will be sang after volounteers leave that will be best approval we can think of.

Spam
Photo of Carla Tanaka
Team

Well, using local musician and health professionals is great!
I like you idea, if it does not interfer in the local culture and provide information and entertainment it would be great for the communities!
Well done!

Spam
Photo of Charlotte Norris
Team

The healthcare professionals would give their approval that the information being taught and sung in the songs is correct. This would mean they would use their professional experience to ensure information being provided is best for the development and well being of both mother and child.

Spam
Photo of Taz Fear
Team

Yes - the idea is based on discussing and working with and alongside local musician from these rural areas of North India - working co-operatively with health professionals to create educational songs that are catered for each area specifically.

Spam
Photo of Khushwant Kasba
Team

Wedding play a big part in the community, have a look at how you could work with the families,
Kid at the wedding love to Dance, also there is also a big band that comes with the wedding.

Spam
Photo of Charlotte Norris
Team

Thanks for the suggestion Kas!

Spam
Photo of Taz Fear
Team

Weddings do play a big part right across India, but for the initial start up we want to focus on North India and use not one off occasions - with weddings but daily local meet-up social areas - such as the Chaupals - we want to get involved with the strong community within Chaupals.
Of course weddings have lots of people attending but I do not know how relevant our songs would be for a wedding - doing some quick reading the type of songs used at weddings are religious; we are not preaching we are teaching about early childhood (songs with information on topics such as how to breast feed, how to clean your baby correctly, early signs of illness etc - not your typical weddings songs).
But getting large groups together in high spirit - such as weddings would be fantastic - so it's worth looking a bit deeper into other community social gatherings there are other than Chaupals .

Spam
Photo of asif masood
Team

A brilliant idea Taz. I can actually visualize the children and adults all joining in as music and dance is a big player in India. Maybe you could include a video demonstrating a song and show a leaflet that goes with the song just to give us a clearer view on how it would work.

Spam
Photo of Taz Fear
Team

Thank you Asif - we really want this to be focused on village collaboration - Local musicians working with healthcare workers and spreading vital knowledge through the rural areas of North India - and further!
I think a video would be a great idea and deffinatley something to discuss with my team.
Thanks from Tara and Team

Spam
Photo of Ayman Hanafi
Team

A fantastic idea Taz. All young children love to sing and it makes their parents extremely happy to hear them sing. As these songs are going to carry a health message, it will make the learning and understanding about health issues most beneficial. I believe this project will catch on very quickly and be a great success. Great proposition Taz. Good luck.

Spam
Photo of Taz Fear
Team

Thanks Ayman!
We wanted this project to spread quickly throughout neighbouring villages and spread word knowledge through songs! (something everyone can remember and learn - of all ages and educational backgrounds). I'm glad you think it will catch on quickly! Tara & Team.

Spam
Photo of Masheyat Chowdhury
Team

This is an amazing idea, I love the way it has been thought out as this practical learning technique will help work with them rather than for them. Think about how you will get hold of the volunteers. In addition, maybe think about after everything session, everybody who has participated can go through what they learnt to make sure everyone understands.

Spam
Photo of Diini Omar
Team

Thanks Mash for the feedback However, HealthCare workers will generate appropriate content for the lyrics; each song will teach a different aspect of essential early year parenting. And volunteers work together with the healthcare workers and local musicians, volunteer are from local village.

Spam
Photo of Vishagan Baskaramoorthy
Team

Songs have potential to be memorable and therefore a great way to remember things. Could instruments be used at these Chapals to further engage the villagers? Could there be informative songs written more specifically for children to sing? Could stories be told through the songs? How could you encourage parents to go on and write their own informative songs?

Spam
Photo of Julia Starzyk
Team

Thanks Vish. Actually we rather wanna focus on parents, especially mothers not kids. Our target is to help them understand possible weaknessses of their motherhood. But your suggestion with stories being told via songs is great. Thanks

Spam
Photo of Charlotte Norris
Team

I think rather than "weaknesses of their motherhood" it should be more about raising awareness of early learning development and milestones in a child's early life that parents can look out for and not only recognise signs of development but encourage this. It will also raise awareness and spread knowledge on matters of health and wellbeing, such as breast feeding and diet. We want to be sensitive in our motives and our wording too. Thanks for the input guys!

Spam
Photo of Ariadne Helen Quintino
Team

I love the fact that you used this traditional approach to create your idea. It's amazing! Because you will suggest them how to improve what they already know, and how to use music in pro of the community and mainly the children. And the coolest part of this activity is the dynamic of how it will work in each village. Congratulation team!

Spam
Photo of Charlotte Norris
Team

Thank you! We wanted to base our idea on the research we did on the communities themselves. Designing a service that will enhance the traditions and cultures that the families already have rather than changing them. Thanks for the feedback!

Spam
Photo of Diini Omar
Team

It’s been an absolute pleasure working with you all. I'm actually looking forward to seeing where this project leads. Thank you for all who hard work during the entire process .

Spam
Photo of Charlotte Norris
Team

Thats nice thanks Diini. Excited to see where it will lead to also. Good work guys!