What we're working on, from participatory and mixed methods research to community-based programming
1. New Study on Malaria Communication Strategy to Accelerate Malaria Elimination Efforts Through Behaviour Change in High Malaria Areas
We’re excited to be able to continue the work from our previous study, "Social Determinants Influencing Access to Malaria Services" with this new project which will focus specifically on developing and testing communication strategies. Our formative research highlighted the need to strengthen existing communication strategies for addressing risky behaviours with different groups in communities related to perceptions about malaria, health-seeking practices, and treatment completion.
This new project kicked off recently, with the Empatika team presenting our ‘outcome-led’ approach during a meeting with UNICEF Indonesia, which includes:
Identifying priorities for behaviour change & desired outcomes,
Adopting tested community-led approach examples, and
Identifying factors for an enabling environment for behaviour change.
The updated communications strategy will aim to improve perception and awareness about malaria and leverage program ownership to help ensure malaria reduction efforts are sustainable. The strategy will be piloted in Papua, West Papua and NTT.
2. New Study on Child Marriage and Early Union Tool Pilot Project
Last year Empatika, in collaboration with the Burnet Institute, wrapped up our Pathways to Adolescent Pregnancy study in Indonesia, where we spoke in-depth with 79 young women in Central Sulawesi and West Java about their experiences with pregnancy and marriage. This project is a continuation of the pathways study which will focus more specifically on early marriage and testing a tool to help quantity this. Along with Indonesia, the pilot will be conducted in two countries: Indonesia and Laos.
The objectives of this pilot are to: a) test and refine a survey tool (both online and offline), working with young women aged 16-24 who have ever been married/in a union; and b) explore what online platforms and/or strategies could be used to scale-up the survey tool.
In addition to helping refine the tools and make them more user-friendly, the study will provide insights into the typologies of early marriage/union in Southeast Asia and help inform next steps for policy, practice, and further research.
3. New Study on Formative Research on Improving Nutrition for Out of School Adolescents in Indonesia
This study will focus on understanding the double burden of malnutrition for out of school adolescents, where undernutrition exists alongside overnutrition and obesity in the same community or individuals. We will then work with adolescents on identifying the most suitable platforms for engagement and developing potential interventions and solutions for improving nutrition. The research will be conducted using adapted immersions followed by people-driven design workshops in the greater Surabaya metropolitan area in East Java and the Jeneponto regency in South Sulawesi in order to include both urban and rural locations.
4. New Study on Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices on Lead Poisoning and Pollution in Indonesia
Lead exposure has been referred to as a silent epidemic as it can lead to serious health issues without obvious symptoms or awareness about exposure. Children are particularly vulnerable to lead poisoning, and poorer families are also at a greater risk as they are more likely to live close to areas with high exposure.
This new study aims to fill an important gap in understanding about people's awareness of lead exposure in Indonesia that will support advocacy related to lead poisoning prevention. The study will explore the knowledge, attitudes, and practices of community members related to environmental and lead pollution in two districts with relatively high exposure, Bogor and Tegal.
Using mixed methods, the study will include Participatory Focus Group Discussions with community leaders, teachers, healthcare workers, parents, and young people; in-depth interviews to explore topics for follow-up or further exploration; and a complementary survey.