Social & Behavioural Change Communication
GESS Output 1
Creating an enabling social-cultural environment for supporting girls’ education through social and behaviour change communication through radio and community outreach.
What is behavioural change communication?
Social and behavioural change are two complementary approaches that emphasise “the need to support two-way communication systems that enable dialogue and that allow communities to speak out, express their aspirations and concerns and participate in the decisions that relate to their development”.
Why behavioural and social change communication?
Despite widespread awareness and citation of girls’ education as an issue in South Sudan, cultural, economic, environmental and logistical barriers remain significant in preventing girls from going to school, staying in school and learning efficiently when in school. Evidence has shown that awareness of the importance of girls’ education alone is not enough; rather, there needs to be a process of behavioural and social change with regard to the benefits of girls’ education.
How will the social and behavioural change communication be implemented?
Social and behavioural change communication in GESS will be accomplished in two ways:
1) Radio Programmes: These 15-minute innovative magazine-style radio programmes, produced by a South Sudanese team of producers, will follow the lives of girls and their families as they struggle and resolve the challenges of going to school. These on-air role models act as positive examples, encouraging listeners to adopt certain behaviours over time. Each programme targets specific knowledge, attitudes and behaviours identified as being supportive of girls’ education. There are also accompanying Public Service Announcement (PSAs), which are 30-60 seconds snaps that will provide information to girls, families and schools. The programmes are aired regularly on a number of broadcasters in each state, in local languages.
2) Community Mobilisation & Outreach includes listener groups, street theatre and debates, mirroring the themes set out in each radio programme. These activites extend the reach of the social and behavioural change output to communities where there is no radio coverage and/or communities that speak a different language from the broadcasts, to reinforce attitudes and behaviours featured in the programme.
These activities contribute to the enrolment, retention and improved learning outcome of girls by:
- Inspiring girls to complete their education
- Encouraging individuals at the community and household level to take actions that are supportive of girls’ education
- Provide information to girls and their families about new initiatives which will help them stay in school
- Provide knowledge and understanding to schools about innovations in the school environment which support improved learning outcomes
- Provide encouragement to parents to get involved in supporting their children at school
- Inspire courage in individuals to make decisions that are not common practice, but that support girls staying on in school