|© UNICEF/HQ98-0231/Robert Grossman|
|SENEGAL: Mayamuna Traor‚ (left with white scarf), 59, president of the local women's association, holds a baby on her lap at a meeting with other women outside a centre run by the NGO Tostan.|
In the field of communication for development, behaviour and social change have often been seen as two distinct approaches, requiring different strategies and unique skills sets.
Behaviour change is commonly defined as a research-based consultative process for addressing knowledge, attitudes and practices that are intrinsically linked to programme goals. Its vision includes providing participants with relevant information and motivation through well-defined strategies, using an audience-appropriate mix of interpersonal, group and mass-media channels and participatory methods. Behaviour change strategies tend to focus on the individual as a locus of change.
Social change, on the other hand, is understood as a process of transformation in the way society is organised, within institutions, and in the distribution of power within various social and political institutions. For behaviours to change on a large scale, certain harmful cultural practices, societal norms and structural inequalities have to be taken into consideration. Social change approaches, thus, tend to focus on the community as the unit of change.
UNICEF believes in supporting strategies across the behaviour and social change continuum, and that a combination of approaches must be utilized for meaningful change to be sustained. UNICEF's nurturing of both behaviour and social change approaches can be evidenced in a wide range of initiatives. One such example is UNICEF's partnership with Worldview International Foundation in planning, designing and implementing the Nun, Chini, Pani ("Salt, Sugar, Water") oral rehydration communication campaign in Nepal which helped reduce the number of annual diarrheal deaths from 45,000 children in the mid-1980s to 30,000 a decade later.
The support to Tanzania's Iringa Nutrition Project — a community-based integrated development approach which put participating villages at the heart of identifying problems and making their own constructive changes to farming and nutritional practices — is another example. For over twenty years, UNICEF and its partners have supported Tostan, an NGO in Senegal that works on health, education and gender-based issues using a community-led development approach. Tostan has been has been globally credited for its contribution towards abandonment of female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) using social empowerment and community outreach through public declarations in about 3,000 of the 5,000 communities across Senegal.
Les enfants agents du changement
Les avantages d'une approche axée sur l'enfant en matière de changements climatiques
UNICEF UK et
Plan International - 2011