Our troupe faced two main challenges with the Target group:
Population Services International (PSI) India is a registered Indian Society operating since 1988. With programs in safe water, nutrition, family planning, and HIV/AIDS, PSI uses social marketing to achieve positive behavior change by promoting ideas, products, and services supporting better health. With a very low density of condom usage in Rajasthan, the campaign’s objective was to “project condoms as normal to use.” Therefore, the challenge was to normalize condom usage by sending out the message that condom is an okay product to use and offers protection against HIV/STI and unwanted pregnancy. Also, this product helps prevent many kinds of diseases, such as HIV, AIDS & other types of Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs), which adversely affect the health of the Public. The PSI wanted mid-media activity in the form of games to achieve the above objective.
Thus a campaign centered on engagement games was designed. Three innovative games were designed for the campaign and were crowd participation-based games.
An 8X8 feet Snake & ladder was used to engage the men. The snakes symbolized the harms of not using condoms (AIDS, STD, infection, etc.), whereas the ladders iterated the benefits of using condoms (Freedom from unwanted pregnancy, safe sex, etc.). The crowd’s involvement was done through a Q & session conducted by Anchor.
The game ensured a long-lasting recall of messages as the audience had to direct the participants to hit out the pot.
The pots were printed with dangers of AIDS & STI, and participants were required to hit out the pots. The twist in the game was the Anchor, who asked blindfolded participants to hit a particular pot out by remaining in the circle. So it was the audience reading the message on the pot and directing the player.
In this game, the message was to show the player how making a good choice can save a life. So among five chairs, players must sit on the right one to remain in the game. One chair had the message of AIDS, and whosoever sits on it gets disqualified.
Finally, a clear message was sent to avoid going with AIDS.
Snakes & Ladder game involved two participants and 4-5 audience for questions & answers apart from 25-30 viewers. So in total, the Snakes & Ladder has touched 35-40 men in a 30 minute game. The blindfold game allowed one participant, and the audience gave directions on which pot to hit. This entailed an active involvement from the audience. The audience was in the range of 20-25. Hence the game has been able to reach out to 25-30 TG in a twenty minute game. The third game of musical chairs allowed three participants to play the game and an audience of 25-30. In total, 35 TG were involved in a game of 30 minutes.
The response from a town has been overwhelming, and in terms of number per town, around 90-100 TG has been actively involved. The total result of a 48-day long campaign covering 84 towns/villages has been 7500-8500 men.