|Hygiene Evaluation Procedures - Approaches and Methods for Assessing Water - and Sanitation-Related Hygiene Practices (International Nutrition Foundation for Developing Countries - INFDC, 1997, 124 pages)|
|5. Methods and tools for investigating the context|
This method also originates from PRA and is used for the purposes of presenting large quantities of c diverse information m a common time frame. Using this method, local people's accounts of the seasonal pattern of rainfall, agricultural labour (usually differentiated by gender), illness, etc., can be represented visually using local materials.
· To obtain detailed information on the activities of local men, women, and children at different times of the year.
· To find out which illnesses are perceived to be most important and at what time of year or season they are most prevalent.
BOX 16. An Example of Sensitive Issues that Can Arise in Mapmaking
From Kwayondu Village, Tanzania
Some community members were concerned about the village boundaries
as they appeared on the map of Kitongoji A (a section of the village). They
explained [to members of the study team] that they were currently involved in a
dispute with the inhabitants of a neighbouring village about ownership of some
of the land on the boundary between the two villages. The case had been taken to
court and was still unresolved. The map presented by the study ream seemed to
support their opponent's side. After discussing this problem at length, the
participants accepted this map, but urged the study team not to show it to
anyone in the neighbouring village as it might be used in evidence against
A ranking system can be used for the study participants to indicate whether a given activity in a given month is of low, medium, or high intensity. Similarly, climatic indicators such as rainfall and temperature may be graded high, medium, and low, and the prevalence of the most important/common illnesses can be graded in the same way.
The materials required for this tool are the same as those described for mapping above.
· Introduce yourself and your team and explain to participants the purpose of the meeting.
· Instructions should be given clearly, in the local language(s), and you should allow ample time for the participants to discuss the local calendar, ask questions, and choose the materials they want to use. Assure participants that you are there to learn, not to judge or give advice.
· Listen (and look) and learn.
· Encourage everyone to contribute and allow for each contribution to be discussed.
· Keep a participants list to enable you to check who they were when reviewing the data.
· After completion, transfer the chart to a flip chart or black board, present it to the study participants, and invite their comments and suggestions. Any necessary corrections and alterations can be made on-site.
· Present the seasonal calendar(s) to a larger group of study participants at another time. For example, you could start your next group discussion by giving feedback on what you have learned about local climate, illnesses, and activities using the seasonal calendar(s). This serves to stimulate participants' interest in the study.
Management, Review, and Use of Information
You can store data obtained from a seasonal calendar on bar charts accompanied by the interpretation in text form (see, for example, Figure 5 and Box 17). Here, the Lunar calendar traditionally used by the Gogo was equated roughly to the Gregorian (European) calendar. The labels on the vertical axis signify a little (kidogo), medium/average (wastani/kiasi), and a lot (sana) in Kiswahili. Participants were asked to concentrate on illnesses that affected children over the past year. The information provided included adult illnesses as well, and it was suggested that the same climatic and illness pattern occurred most years.
A seasonal calendar, stored on a flip-chart or other type of paper, such as the one on Figure 5 which can be found in the Dodoma hygiene evaluation study report, can serve as a document that can be used for reference and/or monitoring purposes.
BOX 17. Extracts of Notes from Discussions of a Seasonal Calendar
From Asanje Village, Tanzania
In Asanje village. seasonal calendars for activities. diseases, and climate were prepared in the same session. The participants included twelve women and nine men who began by discussing the common illnesses. The first illness mentioned was degedege which strictly speaking refers to convulsions. The term is commonly used for malaria. However, the term homa, fever. was also used in the discussion to refer to malaria. Both fever and convulsions were associated with the wet season. Participants agreed that degedege is a common illness during the months of January to April. There is little of it (that is, a few people have it, mainly children) in January; more in February (average numbers of people); but a lot in March and April (almost all young children and several adults suffer from it). The traditional doctor mentioned that he had treated many people for degedege in the past fey, months. The women participants recalled the children who had died from degedege in recent months, but they did not mention any adults...
The amount of rainfall was high in January, very little in February, average in March and April. and little in May...
When asked why the shamba was extended after planting and not before, the participants explained that it was for safety reasons. If the shamba is very close to the bush. it is more difficult for the farmer to protect his crop from raids by wild animals such as baboons and wild boar without him/herself risking attacks by other wild animals including hyenas, leopards and cheetahs. The men reported that at the time of this study. they were having to spend all night outdoors guarding their shambas from wild boar...
The temperature was said to be a little hot in August, but very
hot in September and October. In September and October most adults (particularly
women) suffered from headaches. This was said to he the main illness which
affected large numbers of people. Headaches were caused by walking long
distances (to Babayu and Maya Maya) to fetch water even day. Women carried water
on their heads while men, who usually helped to fetch water during these two
months. were said to use wheelbarrows or bicycles, if available. The
participants discussed and agreed that many people suffered from diarrhoea in
November and December when the rains