Social and Behaviour Change Communication Programmes

Social and Behaviour Change Communication Programmes

Social and behaviour change communication programmes are programmes that aim to address HIV knowledge, risk, sexual behaviour as well as the underlying social and gender norms that impact on AGYW - as well as adolescent boys and young men.

They may include a number of different approaches and activities working with individuals, small groups, schools, communities and the broader public, such as:

  • Counselling
  • Training
  • Communication
  • Community activities
  • Multimedia activities

Successful social and behaviour change programmes that target both AGYW and adolescent boys and young men have been shown to improve attitudes, condom use and uptake of HIV testing services in various countries.

Strategies: Community mobilization

Community mobilization reaches out to communities, supporting them to identify and respond to their needs. It has been shown to be a successful strategy for increasing knowledge and uptake of services, promoting social and behaviour change, for adolescent girls and young women, when combined with other strategies. It complements and works alongside social and behaviour change programmes, including programmes to HIV and to address gender-based violence more broadly.

The SASA! project, developed in Uganda and now being scaled up to other countries, uses community mobilization to engage communities in dialogues around power and harmful gender norms relating to violence against women and HIV. It has been shown to impact positively on behaviour, relationships, intimate partner violence and uptake of HIV prevention and testing services.

UNAIDS (2017) HIV Prevention Among Adolescent Girls and Young Women
CASE STUDY: The onelove campaign in Southern Africa

The Soul City onelove campaign in South Africa spread key HIV prevention campaign messages through mass media, social mobilisation and advocacy, impacting on a wide audience and resulting in improved knowledge and behaviour change to reduce the risk of HIV transmission.

The campaign’s Soul City 9 TV show, which carried strong onelove and HIV prevention messages, reached 51% of the population and was the second highest performing programme in terms of viewership for the 3 months it aired. In the first 18 months of the campaign, over 16 000 adults attended onelove HIV community-based training and over 4000 people attended 55 community dialogues. Some 91 newspaper articles and 37 magazine articles addressing onelove were published. The Love Stories series, with 10 films from across southern Africa conveying the onelove message, was also developed to build a sense of regional cohesiveness.

Quantitative and qualitative studies showed evidence of the campaign’s impact on knowledge, attitudes and behaviour change. The campaign was associated with increase in knowledge about partner reduction and ‘gap length’ and a decreased likelihood of increased number of partners compared to preceding years amongst single women. There was also an increase in condom use, decrease in reported transactional sex amongst men and greater debate and discussion with partners and children associated with watching Soul City 9 TV. Community action plan for holding local HIV awareness and onelove dialogues were documented, following community dialogues.

Soul City The onelove Campaign in South Africa
Capacity Required

The organisation has the capacity to develop structured SBCC programme models with tailor made messages for groups focusing on both men and women.

The organisation has the capacity to develop well-defined curricula which addresses norms, gender roles and power imbalances.

The organisation has the capacity to determine the most suitable delivery modality (e.g.: through voluntary community facilitators, NGO outreach workers or full-time health extension workers).
Critical Enablers