Name of the activity: Project Sudhaar

Country/NMO: Nepal (NMSS)

Program: Healthy Lifestyles & Non-Communicable Diseases

 

Contact information: [email protected]

Type of the activity: Campaign

 

General description:

Project Sudhaar is an initiative taken by the medical students across the country to help alleviate the millennia-old public health burden of tobacco consumption in Nepal, which will be piloted in June, 2018. The entirely student-run project targets young children, medical students and the general public to raise their level of awareness on tobacco and tobacco related products.
Currently, the project involves the following three domains:
• A Nationwide school health project run by medical students targeting students of government schools
• A Model United Nations’ Session (WHO Committee)
• An extensive social media advocacy and mass campaigning throughout the country through rallies, flexes on public vehicles, social projects and videos

Focus area:

Tobacco Prevention

Problem statement:

In May 1999 the governing body of the WHO adopted by consensus a resolution that paved the way for starting multilateral negotiations on the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC). This convention had called upon “all countries to introduce comprehensive tobacco control policies and strategies along the lines recommended by the WHO.”
Government of Nepal, Ministry of Health and Population had signed FCTC in the 3rd of December, year of 2003 which was ratified by House of Representatives on 7th November, 2006. Recently on January 12, 2018, the ministry has once again launched FCTC Strategy – 2030. The strategy is said to be a milestone in controlling the use of tobacco products, which are the main cause of several non-communicable diseases.
The National Health Policy 1991 specifies, “One of the main reasons for the low health standards of the people is the lack of public awareness of health matters. Therefore, health education will be provided in an effective manner from center to rural areas. For this, political leaders, teachers, students, social organizations, women and volunteers will be mobilized extensively up to the ward level.”
Project Sudhaar is an initiative taken by students across several medical schools in the country to help alleviate the millenia old public health burden of tobacco consumption in Nepal, which will be piloted in June, 2018. The entirely student-run project targets young children, medical students and the general public to raise their level of awareness on tobacco and tobacco related products. Additionally, the project aims to instill fundamental knowledge on policy formation to medical students as well.

Target groups and beneficiaries:

The Project has three specific demographics:
1. Grade 7 students of government schools all over Nepal
2. Students of all fields of health sciences
3. The general public specifically those frequently using public transport and using social media outlets

Objectives and indicators of success:

The objectives of Project Sudhaar are:
A. Objectives of the Nationwide School Health Program:
1. To make the students aware of different commercial products that contain tobacco
2. To introduce the effects of tobacco products on health, focusing on the fact that tobacco does not only harm the lungs
3. To introduce certain interventions that can be done on different levels (Nation, school, family and individual) to solve the problem of rising tobacco consumption
4. To encourage active discussion among the students and facilitators about the topic

B. Objectives of the first Medical Model United Nations (MedMUN):
1. To provide a platform for Nepalese medical students from all over the country to work together under specific committees of the United Nations.
2. To provide an opportunity for the students to learn from experts in the field of policy making, and will encourage students to participate in active research.
3. To provide students an opportunity to evaluate the current situation of a certain issue or policy in various UN member states.
4. To create a meaningful impact in the lives of people by implementing the agenda.

C. Objectives of the mass public campaigning:
1. To make the public aware of our efforts to end the epidemic that is the rising tobacco consumption among Nepalese youths.
2. To inculcate a sense of realization among the public of the harmful effects of tobacco consumption on the health of individuals.
3. To put an emphasis on the harmful effects of second hand smoking

Methodology:

Methodology of:
A. School Health Program:
1. Construction of an educators manual that is distributed to a team of 5 – 10 individuals over 15 medical colleges around the nation.
2. Training and discussions among the correspondents and facilitators on the methods and material preparation.
3. Scoping out government schools around the areas (spanning the entire nation) and receiving permission from the school administration to conduct an interactive 2 – 3 hour session among students of grade 7.
4. Carrying out an interactive session where medical students are the facilitators and the above mentioned objectives are incorporated.

B. MedMUN:
1. Investigating bodies/societies in the Nation that are capable of assisting in the facilitation of the first ever Medical Model United Nations.
2. Finalizing World Health Organization as the committee for the MedMUN
3. Managing the necessary logistics and encouraging promising health science students to sign up for MedMUN
4. Setting up a discrimination and hate free agenda for the MedMUN

C. Public Campaigning:
1. Partnering with the local public transport of three cities (Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur) to put up stickers that remind passengers that smoking is prohibited by law in public places
2. Filming a social project to check how many shopkeepers would sell cigarettes or other tobacco projects to underage youths

Plans for evaluation:

The general evaluation of our project will be done by:
1. Reach through social media
2. Views of video through social media
3. Average number of passengers viewing our stickers throughout the month of June
4. Number of schools and students reached through the school health program
5. Efficacy of the resolution made by the participants of the MedMUN
6. Pre and Post evaluation of the students reached through the school health program – focusing on: Effects of tobacco on all systems of tobacco, and Legal issues related to tobacco consumption