Nutrition Videos in Malawi: Not Just for Women

Noriah filming with a camera during the 2018 OMPT Video Education Workshop.

Noriah filming with a camera during the 2018 OMPT Video Education Workshop.

Earlier this year, one of our previous partners, CARE Malawi, showed a very important video about infant nutrition during several screening sessions in the rural areas of the Salima District. Monitoring & Evaluation Coordinator Noriah Katungwe, who participated in last years’ Video Education Workshop, was largely involved in creating and sharing this video. We chatted with her to understand more about her experience using video to bring their nutrition curriculum to life!

Keep reading:

Impact of Video on Your Curriculum

How will video change the way you share information with local beneficiary populations?

Traditionally, we have used the Care Group Cascading model in sharing nutrition messages. This involves a message going through a long line of people before it actually reaches the end users, thereby changing the content and quality. With videos, sharing information is easier as it directly reaches the targeted people without diluting the message.

Video screening session at Ngolowindo primary school in TA Maganga

Video screening session at Ngolowindo primary school in TA Maganga

How do you think video will impact the number of people you are able to reach?

In most traditional sessions, we reach 8 to 12 people as recommended by our partner the Ministry of Health. Later, each of these first group members visits about 10 households. With our first video, we reached 88 people with 42% male participation.

This shows that video will increase our reach and influence male engagement.

Traditionally, men shun away from the nutrition sessions as they think they are for females. But now we have given them nutrition messages through videos, which they find interesting.

Noriah and her group creating a video script during the OMPT Video Education Workshop.

Noriah and her group creating a video script during the OMPT Video Education Workshop.

Do you find video more or less effective than traditional methods of sharing training material?

Noriah editing a video during the Video Education Workshop

Noriah editing a video during the Video Education Workshop

Effectiveness will be easily measured after we do a follow-up survey and household visits of the screening participants. Our end goal is for the household to adopt and practice what the content of the video is highlighting. We are expecting a great difference in adoption of nutrition practices, as most feedback showed that it will be easier since they have seen what they are supposed to do rather than just hearing—for instance, preparing nutritious porridge with local foods like Moringa (a nutritious plant).

Would you recommend other organizations like yours get video and projector training to build their capacity? If so, why?

Video screening session at Mandaliza village, TA Ndindi

Video screening session at Mandaliza village, TA Ndindi

I will definitely recommend other organizations to get video training. The OMPT video training sessions are good for beginners to master video editing skills. Prior to these sessions, I was only able to do video editing using phone apps, but I can confidently say, I was empowered with video editing skills which I am working to polish to be able to provide more professional videos. The presentation slides that OMPT provided are also handy when am stuck. I also greatly appreciate the support of Local Video Trainers who are available to assist and support.

The world is technologically advancing; its high time we introduce such video sharing of information to improve the impact of our projects.

What was your favorite part about the OMPT Video Education Workshop?

The field video shooting was my favorite. I could not believe I was finally doing it! The moment was challenging in an exciting way where I was supposed to watch my angle, the light, background, and my stability. Previously, I did not consider these things when I took videos with my phone. It has also positively affected how I view videos on TV, on social media and other platforms.

What videos have you made since your OMPT Video Education Workshop?

We have made a Complementary Feeding video on ending malnutrition in children under the age of two. We have set three pilot centers with the video, and the general community feedback was encouraging.

Filming in a local hospital in the Salima District

Filming in a local hospital in the Salima District

What videos do you plan to make in the future?

Based on comments from the video screening attendee survey, we plan to shoot a video on hygiene and sanitation later in 2019 as we also continue to screen the first video in other communities.

Any other thoughts for others considering the use of video in their teaching methods?

Video education can fit in any project, be it in education, food security, resilience, disease management, among others.

Video shooting in Ngolowindo village, Malawi

Video shooting in Ngolowindo village, Malawi

One key recommendation is to engage the community in which you will screen the video. Understand their current situation, challenges and lessons they are facing and then incorporate that feedback in the whole process of producing the video.

Screening

How effective was your first screening?

Many participants from the first screening shared how they were going to implement the information they learned from the video. One woman said she used to confuse a malnourished child suffering from kwashiorkor (a severe form of severe protein malnutrition) thinking that the child was growing fat. With the video, she was able to recognize that this child was malnourished and get the child to the hospital. Most participants also indicated that they will try the various porridge recipes they learned from the video at home. A few families we visited after the screening indicated that they had begun practicing eating more healthily and that the men were taking part in the family nutrition more than before. A comprehensive follow-up visit is yet to be done in the participants households.

What was the response of the attendees?

An extract from our Attendee Report

During filling in of Attendee Survey in TA Pemba

During filling in of Attendee Survey in TA Pemba

“The video was easy to follow and understand for the majority, and most indicated that the video improved the presentation of the message compared to how it previously was presented to them.

“In comparison with learning from flipcharts and books, participants said videos were more interactive, engaging and relatable. Most said that their families would practice and adopt initiatives more easily since seeing is believing. Sometimes households do not have trust in volunteers who teach them, but video was seen as more trustworthy since it included members of the community. One participant said:

‘Learning through video is great and households would learn fast and sometimes households do not believe what we are teaching them.’

Video screening session at Nanthomba CBCC in TA Pemba

Video screening session at Nanthomba CBCC in TA Pemba

“Overall, video education is recommended as a tool to assist the community in adopting nutritional messages. It is quick and tackles various issues in a short period of time, and it motivates and encourages volunteers to be more engaged. For volunteers who acted in the video, seeing themselves on screen was a sense of accomplishment as the rest of the community members murmured their names.”


What kind of response do you expect to see from people watching the video?

There is a Malawian saying which goes like, “seeing is believing.” I expect more people to adopt and practice what they will see from the videos.