The sounds of the Pacific, a tool for transformation

Tumaco, a port city located in the South Pacific of Colombia, is renowned for its rhythms and sounds, those born from the Afro culture and that sound like marimba, cununo, drum and guasá.

Tumaco's culture revolves around music. Through décimas, currulaos and modern rhythms such as salcha choke, salsa urbana, and reguetón, stories, knowledge and tradition are told.

As part of the Lazos de Agua Program, these ancestral and cultural knowledges were merged with the Social Art for Behaviour Change™ (SABC) approach and the A·B·C for sustainability model™, both from the One Drop Foundation.

Through participatory work with the communities involved in the Agua para ConvidArte project, implemented in Tumaco by Fundación PLAN, the need to promote hand washing with running water and soap and the payment of the water service fee was identified as practices that would improve the quality of life and health of the people.

Several Social Art for Behaviour Change products were co-created between Agents of Change, communities and artistic groups. Within these, three songs were born to inspire and sustain the practice of behaviours promoted in the framework of the project.

"Al día" is a song co-created by men and the artistic group ACOP to promote the importance of paying the water tariff in urban Tumaco.

"Chucuchú ¿Usted está peye?", the theme song that revolutionised handwashing in Tumaco

This song and its video clip were co-created by the target communities, girls and boys between the ages of 9 and 12 from neighbourhoods in commune 5 of the urban area of Tumaco and the artistic group ACOP.

According to the methodology for the participatory construction of Social Art products, participants attended specific workshops for artistic creation. In this case, girls and boys were trained by the ACOP group to create songs as well as to handle cameras, edit videos and sound, - all this as part of the sustaining actions - with the main objective of mobilising the whole community around handwashing at key moments.

The song Chucuchú ¿Usted está peye? was born, which transcended from being a Social Art product to sustain the practice of the behaviour used by the project, reaching the point of being used in other institutions such as the mayor's office of Tumaco and the secretary of education to promote hand washing with running water and soap in campaigns implemented in educational institutions in pandemic times.

Moreover, with the arrival of COVID-19, the message of hand washing was reinforced at key moments as a measure to reduce the high rate of contagion in the municipality.

Its catchy rhythm made this song one of the most played and sung by all Tumaqueños, as well as inspiring groups of children to create choreographies and dances about handwashing.

This transformation playlist is included in the multimedia application contained in the Tablet that is part of the toolkit that 135 community Agents of Change, teachers and students received as a donation to strengthen the replication work in their communities.

With these tools, communities participating in the project strengthen their capacities, empower themselves and, through art and culture, contribute to the sustainability of the practice of the behaviours addressed in the project.

Did you know?

The song "Chucuchú ¿Usted está peye?" was the first Social Art product created by ConvidArte before the pandemic began, which made it a powerful tool to promote handwashing as one of the most effective measures to reduce the risk of contagion.

In addition, the video clip of the song "Chucuchú a cada hora" was created digitally at the time of the pandemic with the support of mobile phone cameras and with the participation of the project team, the artistic group ACOP, and other participants.

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