The Region’s First Social and Behaviour Change Communication (SBCC) Symposium a Success

The inaugural symposium that gathered over the region’s 150 SBCC professionals and experts hailed as a milestone in the region’s SBCC

19 October 2023
Symposium participants in the ballroom
UNICEF Malaysia/2023

Kota Kinabalu, 19 October 2023 - The region’s first symposium on social and behaviour change communication (SBCC), Asia Pacific SBCC Regional Symposium 2023 held at Sabah International Convention Centre, concluded today with unprecedented success.

“It is heartening to see how the symposium, in just two days, managed to achieve its aim in highlighting the importance of SBCC,” said UMS-UNICEF Communication for Development (C4D) Research Unit Head Dr Lai Che Ching @ Abdul Latif.

He said the Symposium opened new and robust discussions on behavioural interventions and the role of communications in shifting practices and maintaining them in health and community empowerment.

“We are happy to receive feedback from delegates that they are keen to use SBCC as a tool for their work and respective organisations and agencies,” he added.

UNICEF Malaysia Representative Mr Robert Gass said: “UNICEF has seen the benefits of applying SBCC principals and strategists in improving the life of children by ensuring they are able to lead a fulfilling life. We are happy to be part of the symposium and share some of our experiences to give a better life for children and their families.”

Themed “SBCC in Southeast Asia and South Pacific: Unlocking its Potential for Community Development and Resilience”, the symposium was jointly organised by three leading universities in Malaysia - Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia and Universiti Putra Malaysia - and UNICEF Malaysia.

The two-day symposium saw 35 prominent speakers from 7 countries in the region, namely Malaysia, Vietnam, Laos, Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia and New Zealand capturing the attention of over 150 participants.

The participants were served with a total of 17 programmes which included a keynote address, plenary sessions, oral presentations, experiential zones, forums, a sandbox, parallel roundtable sessions and a closing reflection.

Youth and Sports Minister YB Hannah Yeoh who was unable to attend her forum in person, gave a surprise 10-minute video call from Kuala Lumpur to the delegates.

YB Hannah’s full talk titled “Igniting Youth Empowerment for Positive Change” was presented by her Press Secretary Yap Yee Vonne.

What is SBCC?

SBCC, which is sometimes referred to as “SBC” or Communication for Development (C4D), is an evidence-based strategic process promoting the adoption and maintenance of positive and measurable behaviours and social change in individuals, groups or communities.  Using strategic communication to promote positive social outcomes, SBCC employs a systematic process beginning with formative research and behaviour analysis, followed by communication planning, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation.

Please find attached the Asia Pacific SBCC Regional Symposium 2023 programme booklet and photos of the closing ceremony for your perusal.

To see photos and videos of the symposium, or to get more information on the upcoming event, visit or contact Name, Position at Email Address, Phone Number.


The press release is prepared for Asia Pacific SBCC Regional Symposium 2023 by


Faculty of Modern Languages & Communications,

Universiti Putra Malaysia

43400, Serdang,


Media contacts

Rachel Choong
Communications Officer (Media)
UNICEF Malaysia
Tel: +60122932690
Syafika Mohd Ghazi
Tel: 018-2747487


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