One of the ways in which it is possible to influence behaviour is through a community conversation. This is a collective discussion of a particular issue, such as the causes of high dropout rate in the immunization programme, and can lead to a way of finding solutions to particular problems.
Such a conversation will be successful when everyone is given the opportunity to be heard. Many will not participate fully in a meeting unless they feel at ease and believe their opinions will be heard. Therefore in organising a successful community conversation, you should consider the following points:
- Decide on the purpose of the conversation and advertise it widely.
- Decide who should attend or be invited.
- Prepare an agenda for the meeting.
- Decide on the date and time; make sure that everyone you want to attend is informed about when and where the meeting will take place.
- Choose a meeting place where there is little interference, so that everyone will be able to hear one another’s views.
- Facilitate the conversation in an open and non-judgemental way, so everyone feels included and respected.