Awareness Raising

The Strategic Pilot on Adaptation to Climate Change (SPACC) Project uses mass awareness communication tools as a first means of disseminating the concepts of climate change, variability, projected impacts, viable adaptation practices, and ways of integrating SLWM practices with climate variability adaptation options. The principal objective of the Mass Awareness Campaign (MAC) is to improve general awareness on climate variability and changes, projected impact on farm productivity and rural livelihoods, and viable adaptation options in the selected villages of pilot Hydrological Units. MAC is intended to inspire and encourage farmers, individually and collectively, to adapt their current SLWM practices (such as organic farming, reduce use of chemical fertilizers, improve water use efficiency, and thereby improve crop yields) to current and future changes/variability in climate.

MAC is carried out using four methods viz., cultural shows, audio-visual shows, wall writings, and distribution of leaflets. Each of these methods is briefly discussed below:

Cultural shows

A Cultural show uses different forms of folk-arts such as: pallesuddulu (story telling), pittaladora (comedy), street theatre, magic shows, group songs, dances and mimicry. Local cultural troupes, each troupe consisting of 6 rural folk artists (of which, at least two are woman artists), are hired to perform in various pilot habitations.

Upon selection of the cultural troupe, key members of the troupe (essentially including a woman artist) are orientated on the technical content and project objectives by the Project Management Office (PMO). They work with their respective cultural team members to draft a script with the assistance of Partner NGO (PNGO) staff, which is reviewed by the PMO. Later, the cultural troupe enacts a mock cultural show to the PMO and the PNGO staff. The script is fine tuned based on the feedback of the PMO and PNGO staff. Following this, the Field Facilitator, in charge of the village takes steps to publicize venue and date of the cultural show. The cultural troupe is performed in prominent locations of the Pilot HU habitations. Immediately after the cultural performance, a questionnaire is used to gather feedback from the audience.

Audio-visual (AV) shows

Audio/video Compact Discs are used to communicate the project message in the form of songs and documentaries. The materials for audio visual shows are collected from various institutions engaged in preparation of Information Education material on climate change/variability. The materials collected from these institutions are reviewed to identify relevant material and a format for the screening of the AV show is finalized. The PNGOs finalize the list of habitations, venue and show-schedule. The Field Facilitator, in charge of the village will take steps to publicize venue and date of the cultural show. Following the screening of the AV show, Field Facilitators seek feedback from the audience by asking them whether the content screened is relevant to their practices.

Wall writings

Wall writings are an important component of the mass awareness campaign. They are a simple and inexpensive means of disseminating ideas and concepts to the rural audience. Wall writings include slogans or quotes on climate change/variability, SLWM practices, and the importance of institutions and collective work. Wall writings are displayed in prominent places, so that most community members in the pilot HUs can see and read the messages. The sites for the wall writings essentially include common places where people congregate and interact; and places which are in proximity/vicinity of the gram panchayat, schools, cooperative society, cooperative milk society buildings, etc. The themes for the wall writing include climate change/variability, SLWM practices, and the importance of institutions and collective work.

Leaflets/brochures

Publicity materials are prepared in the local language. The leaflets are aimed to catalyze farmers thinking on climate variability/change and trigger ideas for designing pilot experiments in their fields. Also, it is anticipated that these leaflets will be read and discussed in community meetings. The leaflets and/or brochures will also be used as resource materials in the Climate Field Schools (CFS) sessions. Field Officers engage Climate Change Adaptation Committees (CCACs) in the distribution of leaflets.

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