Communication tools for addressing sanitation issues in Gujarat for UNICEF

Posted In:    Prototype Development and Pretesting    Delhi    United Nations Children’s Fund    IEC Campaign    India    UNICEF    Sanitation    Hygiene    Pretesting    Gujarat    MDGs    Nirmal Bharat Abhiyan    ODF villages (Open Defecation Free)    Nirmal Doot    field assessment    Content development    Communication tools    Gujarati    NOV    Recent Projects    Health    Gujarat    2013   

New Concept was commissioned to develop the content of communication tools for a sanitation campaign to be launched by UNICEF, Gujarat to address sanitation and hygiene issues. The scope of work included field assessment in three districts of Gujarat (Kachch, Junagadh and Narmada) prior to content development and pretesting of content in two districts of Gujarat (Narmada and Rajkot).


A study by UNICEF in 2008 pointed out that a mere 21% of rural households in India used improved sanitation facilities. 31% of rural households in India did not have toilets. Basic hygiene facilities and poor sanitation practices have lead to high infant mortality. There has been an increase in the coverage of toilets, but their usage and sustainability remains low. Rural sanitary conditions and practices in Gujarat have been a serious concern in the state. At present, estimated rural sanitation coverage in Gujarat is 76%. The state has aggressively pursued a policy of promoting 'Open Defecation Free' villages and has succeeded in getting 1,859 of the total 13,739 Gram Panchayats certified as "Open Defecation Free' which comes to about 13%. Gujarat had its own toilet construction progamme, which was discontinued in 2004 after an evaluation showed that financial subsidy did not help in increasing covergae. Against the MDG of ensuring 67.9% household level sanitation coverage in Gujarat by 2015, the overall access to toilets was reported as 76% by end 2010. UNICEF in its study also revealed major gaps in the understanding of the community on schemes and options available, health hazards of sanitation, economic efficacy of the construction. Serious misgivings about the functionality of the toilet are present in the society which needs to be addressed with utmost efficiency.

New Concept was responsible for the content development of communication tools which would be used to address sanitation issues in Gujarat.

  1. The process included desk review from secondary sources (various communication materials already developed by Gujarat and Maharashtra).
  2. The field assessment was designed to elicit various motivational factors that can be translated into messages to build pride and ownership in hygiene and sanitation. The three districts for the field assessment included Kachch, Junagadh and the tribal district of Narmada. Two villages from each district were selected (recommendation by UNICEF Gujarat) and a team of 3 was sent to each district for collecting data from various target audiences.
  3. Communication briefs were designed for the overall campaign and for each tool. The copy for all the communication tools was subsequently developed. Content was developed keeping in mind the best practices in outdoor media, mid media and IPC.
  4. The copy was pre-tested with government functionaries in Ahmedabad and with community level stakeholders in Narmada and Rajkot. Feedback from the pre-test was incorporated and the copy was finalised.  

New Concept brought out with a detailed inception report which included the proposed methodology, time-lines and draft research tools along with a desk review report. A field assessment report was presented with the findings of the field assessment and a matrix of messages/media/audience content. The copy for 30 outdoor media, advocacy and planning tools were developed based on the findings of the field assessment. On completion of pretesting of these tools, the pre-test report including finalization of content and suggestions for creative treatment of the same was shared with the UNICEF team as was the final copy for all the tools.