Hesperian Health Guides
A Guide to Which Activity to Use When
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The activities in this book are good for exploring the particular environmental health issues of the chapters in which they are described. And they can also help you move forward while organizing in your community. They can:
- help identify problems or start a conversation about a particular subject (see “Drawing for discussion: How do toxic chemicals get in the water?”, “Clear water might not be clean water,” “2 circles,” “Drawing for discussion: How do pesticides enter the body?”, and “Snakes and ladders game.”)
- help a group make decisions or choose between different needs and options (see “Choosing the right toilet” and “Use everyone’s knowledge, consider everyone’s needs”).
- help to gather information, share knowledge, and change the way we look at our environment and ourselves (see “How diarrhea diseases spread,” “Stop the spread of diarrhea,” “Detective story: How did the drinking water get contaminated?”, “A Community Trash Walk,” and “Do a Health Care Waste Assessment”).
- help to learn new ideas, to relearn ideas we already knew or to learn old ideas in a new way (see “Make a watershed,” “Learning about soil,” “What rain does to bare soil,” “Deadly links: Toxic chemicals pass from animals to people,” and “Do oil and water mix?”).
- help to begin organizing to solve a particular problem (see “Removing barriers to toilets for women,” “Planning a community watershed project,” “10 seeds,” and “Drawing pesticide solutions.”)
- help to teach difficult ideas or understand and resolve conflicts (see “Removing barriers to toilets for women” and “Sociodramas.”)
Some activities can be used together, such as making community maps during or after a health walk, or using a role play as part of a needs assessment activity. What is most important is that activities help people to gather information, share knowledge, and deepen understanding. This will support their organizing, empowerment, and work to solve the root causes of community health problems.