CIDT supports project design to reduce drowning in Bangladesh

28 November 2019
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The World Health Organisation estimates that over 320,000 people drown each year globally. Many of those who drown in developing countries are under 5 years old or associated with high risk occupations such as fishing. Currently the RNLI International Department is working with project partners in Bangladesh to reduce drowning by reducing the risk it represents to such vulnerable groups. RNLI do this through research, advocacy and preventative measures delivered through project-based initiatives.

In November 2019, CIDT consultant, Rufsana Begum facilitated a two-day project design workshop for the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) in Dhaka, Bangladesh.

The aim of the workshop was to facilitate the project design of Project Bhasa Phase 2, ensuring a high-level analysis is integrated into the logframe and to strengthen the skills and knowledge on project cycle management tools.  Participants included RNLI staff, their partner Centre for Injury Research and Prevention (CIRP),  Save the Children and UNICEF.

RNLI workshop in Bangladesh

In Bangladesh, drowning is the leading cause of death for children aged 1-17, with 18,000 young lives lost every year. Disasters and water-related risks affect all areas of Bangladesh, with the Barisal Division bearing the highest burden. Despite the death toll, action to reduce and prevent drowning in Barisal has been absent. The Barisal Division is situated in the central-southern region of Bangladesh, where several large rivers converge. With a land mass of 13.5 million km² and a population of over 8 million, the Barisal Division is one of the most vulnerable areas in Bangladesh – all its six districts are affected by water-related hazards and disasters

In 2016, The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) partnered with The George Institute for Global Health and Centre for Injury Prevention and Research and developed Project Bhasa (phase 1) in Barishal with the aim to prevent drowning, targeting children 1 to 11 years of age. This project started implementation in June 2017 in three Upazilas of Barishal. The goal of the project is to evaluate its various interventions to understand the impact on the drowning problems, while also working with relevant stakeholders, including government and others, to institutionalise and mainstream drowning prevention in Barishal.

Now, Phase 2 (April 2020) of the Bhasa project aims to scale up activities across the Barishal division. The strategic approach aims to be recognised as a model for other divisions to adopt in Phase 3 (2022).

To achieve this,  the CIDT facilitator used participatory approaches throughout the two days,  to foster meaningful engagement and reflection, drawing on  participants’ experiences from the previous project phase. In working through the stages of the project design, a wide variety of methodologies were employed, including group work, role play and various participatory exercises. Several key analyses were undertaken, including conducting a comprehensive problem tree analysis, stakeholder analysis, risk analysis and drafting a logframe for the second phase.

The overall output of the workshop was a gender and socially inclusive logframe that reflects the national and community priorities and needs around drowning prevention.

Below: Participants conducting a problem tree for drowning.

RNLI workshop in Bangladesh

Below: Participant providing feedback.

RNLI workshop in Bangladesh