Exploring the potential of schoolchildren as change agents in the context of school WASH in rural Zambia
The findings show that there is strong evidence to support schoolchildren’s ability to change their families’ WASH knowledge and practice in the context of a school-based WASH intervention. The study showed that pupils utilize techniques like altering their environment, reminding their family regularly and communicating using their homework to influence change at the home level.
Families were shown to be receptive due to previous exposure to WASH information and trusting information from the school. Yet, pupils require instruction from teachers or other trusted adults in order to know how to be able to influence their families. WASH-based homework should be utilized in schools to encourage community change. Moreover, further research is necessary to understand the exact teaching methodologies necessary to leverage this communication technique further.