DESIGN AT THE GRASSROOTS:
Communication for Reproductive Health and Nutrition

The design brief

Jatan Sansthan is a grassroots not-for-profit organization working with rural and resource-poor communities in the state of Rajasthan, India, in the districts of Rajsamand, Udaipur and Bhilwara. Jatan has its presence in more than 1200 villages across these areas, which have had traditionally poor social and health indicators. Since its establishment in 2001, Jatan has designed and implemented various initiatives geared towards improving social and demographic indicators by working with youth groups. In the last decade, Jatan has worked on programs with communities to include children, young people, men and women in the areas of health, education, nutrition, local self-governance and others. Jatan envisions a society where people lead a healthy, safe and empowered life, free from all forms of discrimination. Their mission is to empower communities by giving them spaces to freely express their concerns and provide information that will enable communities to seek social and scientific solutions so that communities can become their own agents of change. 

Synopsis

Client and Sponsor: JATAN SANSTHAN

Guide: LAKSHMI MURTHY- Vik

OBJECTIVES

To develop communication products for reproductive health and nutrition through participatory methodologies and interactive means to facilitate behaviour change for health.

SCOPE OF WORK

  • Developing print collaterals like flyers, pamphlets, user manuals, posters that facilitates communication between trainers and non-literates or low literate audiences to create awareness and break the silence around menstruation.

 

  • Understanding the broader context of rural communities.

  • Modification of existing IEC materials to learn and understand the behaviour change occurred in the lives of people it was designed for, to bring relevant changes in the new design accordingly.
     

BACKGROUND

Uger is a movement supported by Jatan Sansthan focusing on the sustainability of sanitary products. Uger uses four pillars of sustainability: environment, health, economic and social. The movement introduced a cloth pad revolution amongst the rural public in various districts of Rajasthan and Northeast states of India where women are trained to stitch cloth pads and propagate the idea of sustainable menstruation management. 

 

The second part of the project is on nutrition. Nutrition is important during adolescence because of 20% of the total growth in height and 50% of adult weight gain occurs during adolescence. Undernutrition or malnutrition is one of the common issues found in the villages where Jatan works.  This condition is a result of the consumption of insufficient quantity and nutritional quality or both or an inability to absorb nutrients from food.  Most children fall under the category of Severe Acute Malnourishment (SAM) or Medium Acute Malnourishment (MAM) in these villages. Hence, this project is also an attempt to inculcate proper hygiene and eating habits that includes awareness about a balanced diet, among children and mothers.

Outcomes

CLOTH PAD PRODUCTION MANUAL

This book outlines important instructions to keep in mind during the menstrual cycle and describes the complete process of stitching Uger cotton cloth pads. All aspects of pad stitching are covered in this manual, including information on selection of cloth for pad making, how to properly maintain the pad and others. This manual helps all who want to learn how to make Uger pads and start their own production unit. 

Uger FLYER

Uger flyers are handouts providing an informed choice about the various products that are produced by Jatan Sansthan, also providing facts about the harmful effects of disposable sanitary napkins in the environment as well as health. The flyers also act as first-hand information on wearing and maintaining Uger products.

POSTER ON 'MEN IN MENSTRUATION'

Cultural norms, superstitions, taboos and silence around menstruation lead to limited or no factual information. Awareness and scientific knowledge will sensitize everyone towards the needs of menstruators.
At Jatan Sansthan, we see awareness and training and the stitching of Uger cloth pads as an empowering tool. We specifically encourage boys and men to make Uger cloth pads and gift it those they care for! The poster was designed as part of Poster presentation for COPASAH Global Symposium 2019
(Community of Practitioners on Accountability and Social Action in Health) which was won the winning entry among 10 countries around the world.

POSHAN GAADI- Interactive nutrition book

Poshan gaadi is an interactive flipbook for learning about nutrition and balanced diet among the stakeholders: children, parents and the Anganwadi workers. A nursery rhyme was developed for the Anganwadi children which informs them about the necessity of balanced diet in order to lead a

healthy life. The rhyme is sung by Anganwadi workers and helpers and is repeated by the children in unison followed by the movement of body parts

of the corresponding animal in the flipbook which reveals information

about different food items in a balanced diet.

Gayathri Attoor
Communication Design
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Made with lots of love by Gayathri Attoor © 2019