Assessing the contribution of ‘Emotional Demonstrations’ to promote recommended breastfeeding and infant and young child feeding practices

In 2014, the national Ministry of Health of Indonesia requested the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) to support the District governments of Malang and Sidoarjo in East Java Province to reduce stunting through improvement of maternal and infant nutrition. Subsequently, GAIN with funding from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands and in collaboration with Save the Children, Paramitra Foundation, and PT. Holland for Water (Nazava) initiated the first phase of the “Baduta” program. The experience and recommendations generated through the first phase of the programme were meant to inform efforts to scale-up the programme nationally in Indonesia.

The first phase of the Baduta programme ran from 2013 to 2017. A behavior change strategy was developed based on the principles of “Behaviour Centred Design” (BCD), an approach to designing behaviour change interventions developed by London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM). BCD is rooted in evolutionary theory, psychology, and commercial marketing. BCD aims to create innovative, imaginative and provocative communication messages and activities that tap into people’s emotional response, over and above rational triggers: human drives like fear, hunger, disgust, comfort, and lust; emotional responses including hoarding, creating, nurture, and love; and the brain-centred interests of curiosity and play.

This strategy included participatory group activities in the form of “emotional demonstrations” or emo demos were also created. These are interactive sessions around 4 target behaviours to improve exclusive breastfeeding and complementary feeding. Emo demos were originally developed by LSHTM to promote handwashing with soap. The intention of emo demos is to create habits by triggering recall or association of drivers, emotions, or interests with desirable or undesirable behaviours. To our knowledge, Emo demos as such have not previously been applied to nutrition messaging.

We now aim to review and understand the strengths and limitations of the Emo Demo component, and its potential for utilization as part of behaviour change approaches for improving child feeding in Indonesia and beyond.

Applicants are invited to submit EOI by 15 August 2019 to rfp@gainhealth.org

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