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Reckitt signs MoU with Nagaland to implement ‘The Birds and Bees Talk’ program for adolescents

The Birds and Bees Talk is a comprehensive growing up, life skills education curriculum to help make children between 10-19 informed and empower them with critical information that promotes them to grow into responsible healthy adults
Reckitt signs MoU with Nagaland to implement ‘The Birds and Bees Talk’ program for adolescents
Reckitt signs MoU with Nagaland to implement ‘The Birds and Bees Talk’ program for adolescents

In order to implement its ‘The Birds and Bees Talk’ programme in Nagaland, Reckitt, a global leader in consumer-healthcare on Tuesday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the School Education Department of Government of Nagaland.

The Birds and Bees Talk (TBBT) programme is a comprehensive growing up, life skills education curriculum to help make children between 10-19 informed and empower them with critical information that promotes them to grow into responsible healthy adults.

Launched last year with the support of the state governments of Manipur, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh, the Birds and Bees Talk programme already has a 2-level interactive, animated curriculum that covers growing up and life skills, to promote the core principles of inclusion, awareness, consent, protection, and equity. The holistic approach of the programme envisages celebrating special days and important health days across the states leveraging its rich music, art and culture ensuring that knowledge is not limited to the restraints of physical classes. This year, the programme is focused on deepening the impact in Nagaland by equipping thousands of adolescents and young people with a curriculum that will help them make informed choices and grow into healthy adults. It will be executed and implemented across Nagaland in government and private schools to ensure maximum reach and beneficiaries.

While launching the programme, Shanavas C, Principal Director, School Education Department, Nagaland said, “We are proud to introduce this comprehensive programme in Nagaland. The Birds and Bees Talk is the first and unique curriculum to address adolescents’ mental and sexual health in the state. Our vision is to work towards transforming the lives of our youth, preparing them for a better and brighter tomorrow. We are happy to extend all the support and assistance of our department to the project’s success in the state and take this partnership forward.”

Commenting on the launch, Ravi Bhatnagar, Director – External Affairs and Partnerships, South Asia, Reckitt, said, “Armed with accurate information, education and awareness, adolescents can form the future of the country and bring about the much-required social change. We are engaging youth by using non-traditional methods such as music, arts, and culture. This year, we are deeply focused on providing solutions such as an e-learning system designed for teacher’s training, and a dedicated chatbot platform for Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ). Our aim is to work towards transforming the minds of youth by keeping up with their advancements through education and awareness,” Bhatnagar added.

Similar to other states, the programme is implemented by Plan India across six northeastern states of India. Under this curriculum, teachers from the enrolled schools will be appointed and equipped with full programme essentials including teaching methods and lessons. The unique design of the programme comprises 27-hour lessons allowing the schools to teach in a staggered format, spread over the year. The programme will help children in developing key skills like critical thinking and analysis, and informed decision-making.

Highlighting the implementation of the programme, Mohammed Asif, Executive Director, Plan India said, “In sync with the Rashtriya Kishor Swasthya Karyakram (RKSK) of the Government of India, we believe adolescents and young people must be enabled, equipped and empowered for their holistic development. They should be aware of their sexual and reproductive rights, make informed choices for themselves and lead healthy lives, free from violence, discrimination and abuse. ‘The Birds and The Bees Talk’ project will equip thousands of adolescents and young people with awareness and access to the sexual and reproductive health services and rights, which is important for strengthening gender equality in the state and our nation.”

The curriculum is divided into 14 key themes available in two levels: ages 10-14 and 15-19. The programme is building and launching its digital ecosystem to ensure that the Covid pandemic does not hinder learning and development. The digital ecosystem of the programme includes an e-learning platform to deliver sessions to students across the states, with a rewards and recognition programme linked to encourage schools, teachers and students to intensively engage with the content. Supporting the e-learning platform is an artificial intelligence (AI) enabled chatbot, and a podcast channel, along with a website that gives a complete overview of the programme.

Read more: Microgravity’s Skill IT program to support upskilling underprivileged students

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