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hi visual aids training workshops aim to help community level workers learn how to make and use low-cost visual materials for participatory communication.
Workshops usually last for 5 days, with two hi facilitators and 15-20 participants. Shorter or longer workshops are also possible, depending on the requirements of the groups with whom we collaborate.
Workshop participants are usually people who want to use visual aids in their day to day work. They are often community health workers or field workers in environmental or community development projects. They often come from the local community where the workshop is held.
Please note that It is not necessary for participants to have had any formal artistic experience or training.
Workshops are participatory and consist mainly of hands-on practical work, with some group discussion. Practical work takes up most of the workshop time and, between them, group members usually manage to make and practise using a wide range of different visual materials.
The curriculum for the training varies according to the needs of participants and their organisations. The details of the curriculum are not usually prepared in advance but, rather, agreed on by participants and facilitators working together.
Clickhereto see some of the topics that are commonly covered at our visual aids workshops.
Among the topics that can be covered at our visual aids training workshops
are the following:-
• Basic drawing skills
• What is participatory communication?
• Visual literacy
• Painting skills
• Pictures for critical awareness
• Making picture cards
• Making discussion starters
• Making flannelboards
• Making resource pictures
• Making community maps
* Pictorial learning aids for the classroom
• Using participatory visual aids
• Community involvement
• Posters and pre-testing
• Silkscreen printing
• Making and using simple puppets
• Participatory photography
Materials required for a workshop can be quite basic and inexpensive. They include paper, pencils, pens, paints and brushes, used newspapers and magazines, adhesive tape, cloth and sometimes items for silkscreen printing.
In situations where it is possible and appropriate, digital technology can be used. Photographic images can be incorporated into visual materials and/or viewed on a computer.
Evaluation of the training is done by participants at the end of the workshop. Outcomes are evaluated against workshop aims determined at the start by participants and facilitators.
Our work is evaluated in terms of the effectiveness of the training and not in a wider context. We are a training organisation and hi does not manage projects. We do, however, receive informal feedback from the groups we work with. This feedback often tells us that our training has been successfully put into practise by workshop participants.
Community health workers in the Sta. Terezinha favela in Recife, Brasil, made images to help discuss environmental health issues in their community. These discussions eventually led to community members covering some of the drainage ditches in the favela to prevent the spread of cholera.
Villagers in the Upper Mahaweli catchment area in Sri Lanka discussed and analysed the causes of deforestation in their area, facilitated by Hi workshop participants using a range of participatory visual aids. As a result of several image-led sessions, the villagers planted 44 hectares of trees.
Topiyoo Nya Blimie, one of the participants at the HI workshop on pictorial learning aids (2007), is encouraging teachers at the community school in Paynesville, and trainee teachers at the MM University in Monrovia, to incorporate the learner-centred pictorial materials into their lessons.