Trisha Shetty (Editor)

Swachhta Ki Pathshala

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Swachhta Ki Pathshala is a part of Banega Swachh India, a five-year corporate social responsibility initiative by RB India that began on October 2, 2014. The primary objective of the Banega Swachh India programme is to improve the health and hygiene condition of around 100 million people by 2020 by undertaking behaviour change communication, providing product access, building capacity and creating infrastructure along with operation and maintenance.

Contents

Foundation Stage

Early Learning Goals:

  1. Personal Social and Emotional Development
  2. Knowledge and Understanding of the World
  3. Physical Development

Personal Social and Emotional Development

  • Self Care - The children are first taught how to manage their own personal hygiene
  • Behaviour and Self-Control - They are then made to consider the consequences of words and actions for themselves and others
  • Making Relationships - They are asked to work as a part of a group or class, taking turns and sharing fairly, understanding that there need to be agreed values and codes
  • Knowledge and Understanding of the World

    Exploration and investigation - The children are encouraged to ask questions about why things happen and how they work.

    Physical Developments

  • Using equipment and materials - Children are then trained to handle tools and objects safely and with increasing control.
  • Health and bodily awareness - They are also made to recognise the importance of keeping healthy and how to manage it.
  • The Need

    About 50% of India's total population has no access to a toilet and 123,000 children die a year from diarrhoea (Save the Children) and poor sanitation costs the Indian economy about $50 billion every year (World Bank).

    The Solution

    To address these health and hygiene issues, RB India committed a £10 Million investment to improve the health and hygiene of around 100 million people in India. It collaborated with interactive curriculum experts, Butterfly EduFields & XSeed to develop and design a modular school education programme for children, the future citizens of our country. It also tied up with NDTV to publicise the event so that more and more people can benefit from the initiative. This collaboration is to address the challenging task of helping children learn and imbibe good practices from the beginning so that they can become agents of change tomorrow.

    Swachhta Ki Pathshala Programme

    The objective of the Swachhta Ki Pathshala is to trigger the right set of behaviour change required for the overall development of children. The programme, designed by XSeed Education, is directed towards empowering school children by creating awareness about hygiene practices, so that they, in turn, can educate the wider families and community. It comprises the following modules:

    Personal Hygiene: Starting with the basics, this module teaches children about habits of personal upkeep like washing hands, brushing teeth, bathing & cleaning the body thoroughly. It talks about how and why they are so important.

    Hygiene at home: Charity begins at home. This lesson is about using the toilets, keeping them clean, consuming clean food and water, eating neatly & hygienically, keeping the home clean, etc. It also teaches children the importance of discarding waste, cleaning animals and saving electricity.

    Hygiene at school: This module educates children about the conduct and hygiene practices to be followed at school. From cleaning the classroom & playground to using the toilets cleanly and keeping the entire premises clean.

    Hygiene in illness: One of the most important lessons of the curriculum, this module talks about the existence of germs, how they spread, the threat they pose, and how to prevent getting sick due to them. Since a lot of children die due to diarrhoea in India, there is a special lesson dedicated to taking care of those afflicted with diarrhoea. It educates on other health issues like first aid, fever treatment and contagious diseases as well.

    Hygiene in neighborhood: The fifth module talks about how essential it is to keep the surroundings and public places clean. It also discusses the widespread problem of pollution and the importance of growing and caring for plants as a necessity for the eco-system.

    These modules consist of the following material

  • Student Workbook: A workbook that demonstrates various hygiene and health issues with the help of illustrations
  • Teachers Curriculum Manual: A step-by-step instruction booklet for the teachers' reference, including special stories or activities as additional resources
  • Awareness material such as Teaching aids: Additional tools of learning like posters in different languages to aid better learning & understanding for the children
  • Swachhta Ki Pathshala Toolkit

    Butterfly EduFields has created several interactive toolkits for a more engaging and practical method of learning for children. Through working models, puzzles and other interesting activities, these kits effectively teach hygiene techniques or impart health tips to children.

    Reach & Implementation

    It aims to reach 25 million people, 10,000 primary schools (including 50,000 teachers), 10 million families and 2.5 million children by 2020.

    In order to increase its reach, the teachers’ curriculum manual is developed and translated in 4 different languages: Hindi, English, Tamil and Telugu and will soon be available in Marathi as well. It is being implemented in five states - Rajasthan, Bihar, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and will be implemented in Maharashtra as well

    The Delhi government has already adopted this program and will be taking it up in all their schools.

    Brand Ambassador

    Superstar Amitabh Bachchan is the official brand ambassador of the Banega Swachh India campaign and commending the inititiative, he said, “I believe that when children are taught something and they go and tell their elders about it, the chances of the elders listening and changing their habits are higher.”

    Amitabh Bachchan also helmed the first session of the Swachhta Ki Paathshala to pave the way for a change in behaviour. In the session, he talked about many issues like the importance of personal hygiene (especially washing hands with soap), taking up the responsibility of cleaning a small area every day, leaving the bathrooms spic and span after using them among other things. He also said, “Making this (hygiene and health) a subject, a part of the curriculum in your studies is a very welcome step. When we inculcate our youngsters with some kind of civics, whether on discipline, cleanliness or hygiene, somewhere down the line there is an effect on whatever academics they are pursuing.”

    Media Coverage

    The Swachhta Ki Paathshala was widely covered by the media including Times of India, IBN Live, Economic Times, and Dainik Jagran among others.

    References

    Swachhta Ki Pathshala Wikipedia


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