No Change without Behaviour Change:Communication for Development Training conducted for Skilled Behaviour and Social Change programming
Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar, 18 October, 2012: A ‘Communication for Development Training Programming and Monitoring in Behaviour and Social Change’ concluded in the Myanmar capital today. Organized by UNICEF in collaboration with Central Health Education Bureau in the Department of Health, over 50 officials from Ministry of Health, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement, Ministry of Information, local and international NGOs, media and UN agencies participated in the four-day workshop.
“It is the first time that we are organizing such a training course on Communication for Development. The purpose is to strengthen capacity of government officials, UNICEF programme staff and partners on communication for development programming approaches that are instrumental to social and behavioural change and to better contribute to achievement of the programme results,” said Dr. Min Than Nyunt, Director General of Department of Health (DOH), Ministry of Health. “Evidence shows that a significant reduction in maternal, newborn and child related disease and death can be achieved through interventions that are dependent to a large extent on the adoption of recommended behaviours and practices by individuals and families,” The Director General added.
“The role of communication is increasingly recognized as an important catalyst for achieving positive change and results for children in the context of Myanmar,” said Mr. Ramesh Shrestha, UNICEF Representative, at the closing ceremony of the training, “Wellbeing of children heavily relies on the family caring practices, on the value attached to and behaviours related to health, education, hygiene and protection. A well designed set of C4D interventions can make a difference. And this is the skills this workshop aims to promote through our partners and colleagues with whom we work closely.”
The workshop objective was to develop national level capacity and understanding on Communication for Development (C4D) as an integral part of programme in achieving results for children and women in Myanmar.
Facilitated by a senior UNICEF Consultant with 35 years of experience in the Asia and Pacific region, Mr. Guy B. Scandlen, the workshop offers interesting sessions on an array of topics on Communication for Development theories and methodologies, as well as practical exercises relating it to human and child development programming in Myanmar.
“This workshop will introduce the evidence on which to base the best communication for development methods to inspire behaviour and social change,” said Mr. Guy Scandlen, a senior UNICEF consultant. “Many people want to act or are acting (behaving) in very positive ways. But there are times when the social environment does not enable people to act in their own best interests.”
“In UNICEF, we are committed to further strengthening communication for development interventions primarily to fulfill our mandate to protect children, women and vulnerable groups of people,” said Mr. Suleman Malik, C4D Specialist from UNICEF Myanmar. “We hope the training will not only help us to better plan and implement programmes, but contribute to our own personal growth as development professional and children’s advocate.”