Development Communication - Examples


  • One of the first examples of development communication was Farm Radio Forums in Canada. From 1941 to 1965 farmers met in groups each week to listen to special radio programs. There were also printed materials and prepared questions to encourage group discussion. At first this was a response to the Great Depression and the need for increased food production in World War II. But the Forums also dealt with social and economic issues. This model of adult education or distance education was later adopted in India and Ghana.
  • Similar to Canada's Farm Radio Forums, Radyo DZLB, the community broadcasting station of UPLB College of Development Communication is a forerunner of school-on-air (SOA) concept that provides non-formal education for rural folk. DZLB has hosed SOAs on nutrition, pest management and cooperatives. Currently, DZLB continues to air educational programming for farmers and cooperatives.
  • Instructional television was used in El Salvador during the 1970s to improve primary education. One of the problems was a lack of trained teachers. Teaching materials were also improved to make them more relevant. More children attended school and graduation rates increased. In this sense the project was a success. However, there were few jobs available in El Salvador for better-educated young people.
  • In the 1970s in Korea the Planned Parenthood Federation had succeed in lowering birth rates and improving life in villages such as Oryu Li. It mainly used interpersonal communication in women's clubs. The success in Oryu Li was not found in all villages. It had the advantage of several factors including a remarkable local woman leader and visits from the provincial governor.
  • A project of social marketing in Bolivia in the 1980s tried to get women in the Cochabamba Valley to use soybean recipes in their cooking. This was an attempt to deal with chronic malnurishment among children. The project used cooking demonstrations, posters and broadcasts on local commercial radio stations. Some people did try soybeans but the outcome of the project is unclear.
  • In 1999 the U.S. Government and D.C. Comics planned to distribute 600,000 comic books to children affected by the Kosovo War. The comic books are in Albanian and feature Superman and Wonder Woman. The aim is to teach children what to do when they find an unexploded land mine left over from Kosovo's civil war. The comic books instruct children not to touch the anti-personnel mines and not to move, but instead to call an adult for help. In spite of the 1997 Ottawa Treaty which attempts to ban land mines they continue to kill or injure 20,000 civilians each year around the world.
  • Since 2002, Journalists for Human Rights, a Canadian based NGO, has operated long term projects in Ghana, Sierra Leone, Liberia, and the DR Congo. jhr works directly with journalists, providing monthly workshops, student sessions, on the job training, and additional programs on a country by country basis.

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