Blog: Translating face-to-face participatory workshops to an online setting - what do you think?

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  • awebbslh
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Blog: Translating face-to-face participatory workshops to an online setting - what do you think?

Hi everyone, 

We recently published a blog on our experience of working on  local government leadership and prioritisation of sanitation and hygiene in East Africa. 

It's a reflection on our attempts to adapt our face-to-face workshops to an online setting. We'd welcome any lessons you've learnt on this too!

Here is the blog:  https://sanitationlearninghub.org/2021/06/04/translating-face-to-face-participatory-workshops-to-an-online-setting/

Thanks,

Alice
Alice Webb
Communications and Impact Officer
The Sanitation Learning Hub at the Institute of Development Studies
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  • Chaiwe
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Re: Blog: Translating face-to-face participatory workshops to an online setting - what do you think?

Dear Alice,

This is a topic worth navigating for many. Those working with rural/peri-urban-based target groups in developing countries are especially finding it very challenges during these COVID times to adequately reach their target groups. 

Currently, for a good number of countries in Southern Africa, the 3rd wave of the pandemic is in full gear. This means restrictions on travel and face-to-face meetings are back on. Community structures at the grassroots level have little to no access to internet connectivity and virtual tools. This ultimately puts a halt on all physical activities. The only solution that seems feasible enough is to wait it out.  Once things ease out again in terms of cases, implementers resort to smaller group meetings, masking up, hand washing and social distancing in order to engage with their target groups.

However, I do acknowledge that at the local government level, the example shared in the blog is very much valid. 

I too wonder what the experiences are like elsewhere.

Regards,
Chaiwe
SuSanA Forum Moderator
(With financial support by GIZ from June to October 2021)

Chaiwe Mushauko-Sanderse BSc. NRM, MPH
Independent consultant located in Lusaka, Zambia
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  • ElaineMercer
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Re: Blog: Translating face-to-face participatory workshops to an online setting - what do you think?

Hi Chaiwe,

Your comment makes me think of the value of more old-fashioned info sharing methods in these contexts especially at the moment i.e. print copies and flash-drives. The main issue then is knowing the best place/people to send these things to.

We are planning to do a hard copy mailout soon to strategic contacts working at local community level where internet connection is poor. Your thoughts on key organisations/people to share print copies or flash-drives with in Southern Africa are welcome. 

Obviously this does not solve the much bigger problem of not being able to easily talk to and work people face-to-face but it could at least give local sanitation and hygiene practitioners useful resources in the meantime to help with planning going forward.  

Best wishes
Elaine
Elaine Mercer
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The Sanitation Learning Hub
The Institute of Development Studies
sanitationlearninghub.org/
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  • gmm
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  • International development specialist, with extensive experience in Africa, the Middle East and Asia, and a passion for innovation and learning. Research officer at the Sanitation Learning Hub / IDS.
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Re: Blog: Translating face-to-face participatory workshops to an online setting - what do you think?

Hello Chaiwe,

Let me chip in too, as the issue you raised emerged quite clearly in a webinar series on Covid-19 and sanitation we co-hosted with Unicef in August. 

Many webinar contributors provided concrete examples of integrating new solutions for remote communication and programming to continue sanitation programmes throughout the pandemic, in a variety of settings and geographies. Examples included sanitation utilities setting up customer care call centres and mobile payment systems in Kenya; rural WASH actors in Mozambique adjusting CLTS methodologies to minimise community gatherings; WASH actors in India introducing tele-counselling and tele-verification to keep promoting household-level sanitation; indigenous communities in Guatemala being reached via locally based proxy stakeholders; and more. All in all, the idea emerged that although communication technologies are no silver bullet, they actually help sanitation programming now and can help in future if used wisely. Also, the need was highlighted to rely more extensively on locally based capacities and stakeholders. 

The two webinar recordings are available through the SLH YouTube channel, and hopefully you can find inspiration here for effective solutions:
and


Gian M.
Gian Melloni
Development and WASH specialist
Research Officer at the Sanitation Learning Hub, Institute of Development Studies

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