COPASAH South Asia: Innovative Use of ICTs for Community Based Monitoring in Health
Capacity Building Workshop, Bhopal- India January 8-10, 2015
Participants discussing about skills of photography
With a view to facilitate grass root community practitioners to strengthen the community based monitoring (CBM) work by using technology, a three day capacity building workshop, COPASAH South Asia -Innovative Use of ICTs for Community Based Monitoring(CBM) in Health , was held from January 8 to 10, 2015 in Bhopal, in the state of Madhya Pradesh, India. Nearly 30 grass roots practitioners from six states of India including Gujarat, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh participated in the workshop.
The workshop aimed to enhance the skills and develop innovations, tools, thematic innovations, new constituencies for accountability practice in health using technology. The goal was to facilitate the processes of strengthening the social accountability practices and to consolidate the existing community of practitioners to innovate the community monitoring practices especially with the use of technology, while using Photo voice as the primary methodology. The value addition aimed to the traditional Community Based Monitoring through this three day workshop was the use of technology fro documenting evidences for accountability and social mobilisation. The capacity building workshop was facilitated by resource persons to help the practitioners acquire hands on experience on audio visual tools and technology such as Photovoices, cell phones, video cameras, video clippings from cell phones and with other media tools such as SMS, website, blogs, facebook etc. The workshop focused on innovation and group (collaborative) work. The workshop has been undertaken for documentation in COPASAH. To further facilitate sharing of innovative practices of monitoring, accountability information, evidence based documentation using ICTs and facilitate peer learning, COPASAH groups (social media) in India of community practitioners including that of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh were created. Maharashtra already has a group on Community Based Monitoring and Planning (CBMP) that will be linked to COPASAH global network. The creation of the Gujarat group is in the process. The group of practitioners in each state consists of collective of organizations working for social accountability.
Created with an aim to assist grass root community practitioners to strengthen community based monitoring, the practitioners can make use of technology, such as social media (facebook) to share community based monitoring innovative practices, knowledge, information, evidence documentation using Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) techniques and methodologies, such as Photovoice, video clippings, photo stories, photos with stories and other methodologies. These groups will be linked to global COPASAH network to facilitate inter- state sharing as well a wider sharing to allow for peer learning amongst practitioners on the global COPASAH platform.
The participants from six different linguistic states expressed in unison that the workshop had aided them with the knowledge of the use technology in CBM. They emphasized the need of further workshops in the future.
Before the workshop, proposals were invited from the states on the current work and information was sought on how the state groups would like to use the ICTs for value addition of community monitoring work and generate a photo voice product. Prior to the workshop the team coordinators of the respective states were engaged through teleconference, emails and other modes to plan and design the workshop. Facilitated by a key person to coordinate the work, the states groups chose a focus theme in the workshop at Bhopal to work further (January- April 2015) within which they will use ICT innovation.
The groups will primarily use the Photovoice methodology for evidence generation on the chosen themes. In addition, they will select either a video or audio medium to supplement the same. They will engage with the community as well as health providers using the evidence and media platforms.
The photo voice product, (AV product) will be submitted in its completed form in April, 2015 by the groups along with a final report on the process.
Plan of action developed by the participants
for using technology in CBM
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This report is compiled by Surekha Dhaleta who works as a Programme Officer in the Social Accountability in Health team at CHSJ , Delhi (India) . She is the team member of the COPASAH global secretariat and of the COPASAH communication hub. To know more about the work of CHSJ please visit, www.chsj.org and for more information on COPASAH visit www.copasah.net