Shongjog, the multi-stakeholder platform on Communication with Communities in Bangladesh, is working to collect and collate feedback from communities affected by the recent floods using a range of sources: through mobile information centres, a radio call-in programme, phone calls and SMS, Facebook and face-to-face consultations. The feedback will be synthesised in regular summaries and shared to assist clusters to better plan and implement relief activities with communities’ needs and preferences in mind. To date two summaries have been shared and these can be downloaded below.
The key problems that communities are reporting are unsurprising: a scarcity of pure drinking water, poor water and sanitation, high price of food and related items, outbreaks of water-borne diseases and crop lands remaining submerged under water. Communities raised a number of issues where they require additional information or support in order to meet their current needs. Information needs related to drinking water and the wellbeing of livestock are prominent – suggesting that more attention needs to be paid to disseminating information to communities on these topics in particular. The state-owned radio broadcasting organisation, Bangladesh Betar, has already been broadcasting responses to such questions by seeking expert opinion on the topics as well as providing other useful and relevant information to affected populations. We know from previous evaluations* that people's questions and information needs evolve over time, so it will be important to continue to collect and respond to feedback.
All CwC activities being undertaken in Bangladesh can be registered with Shongjog and inputs into the next Community Feedback summary are welcome. These should be sent to Fuad Ur Rabbi (fuadur.rabbi @ bd.bbcmediaaction.org)
Shongjog is also available to assist agencies with the design and implementation of CwC and community engagement activities within sectoral responses. Please contact Richard Lace (richard.lace @ bd.bbcmediaaction.org)
* e.g. Margie Buchanan-Smith, Subindra Bogati and Sarah Routley, with Srijana Nepal, Sweta Khadka, Yamima Bomjan and Neha Uprety (2016) Are you Listening Now? Community Perspectives on Communication with Communities during the Nepal earthquake. CDAC Network