SaS is a novel and unique effort where school children have been made creative partners in the fight against this century’s biggest health threat. We combined innovative science education and public engagement approaches (on the lines of Child-to-Child Approach) to ensure that the project not only empowers young children with scientific knowledge but equips them with tools to use this knowledge to promote awareness and action in their sphere of influence. These approaches harnessed the inherent enthusiasm and creativity of young children to convey the complexity of the subject at hand.
Story is a great vehicle to deliver a message. Hence, we collaborated with World Comics India which developed the grassroots comics methodology – a simple, cost effective yet powerful engagement tool that requires only a black pen and a paper and provides a medium for people, irrespective of their education and literacy level, to express themselves.
The children in our workshops used these comics and stories to further engage with their peers, teachers, parents and community.
There was a lot of energy and immense excitement at these sessions due to the bond between the creator and the reader, that made the stories a lot more relevant to the reader. By its very nature, comics appealed to children and adults alike and made the audience a lot more receptive to the message than a regular awareness campaign. A sense of ownership of the work ensured that the dialogue on antibiotic resistance, initiated during these sessions was sustained beyond the workshop. While the local flavour of the comics helps the Indian audience connect deeply with the content, the issues discussed in the comics have relevance around the globe.
Click here to view the comics
On world Tuberculosis Day 2021, with CSIR-CCMB, we launched a new animation film on antibiotic resistance inspired by the comics developed by the children in the workshops. This film attempts to explain the issue of antibiotic resistance, the science behind this natural process, how human actions have been accelerating the problem and how to tackle it at an individual level, all through the horse’s mouth! Watch the antibiotic, the hero of our story join hands with our children superheroes to “SAVE THE DRUGS AND BEAT THE BUGS”!