The Manoff Group's Behavior-Centered Programming is a
practical and effective approach to changing behaviors
(and thereby achieving program objectives) at the individual,
community and organizational levels. Behavior-Centered
Programming can be adapted for any health issue. It provides
opportunities for families, health workers and influential
community members to participate in formulating and testing
proposed practices, program strategies and activities,
messages, materials and products. Our central technique
for doing this, developed by the Manoff Group, is called
Trials of Improved
Practices (TIPs). Using TIPs ensures that strategies
and activities are tailored to the local environment and
are both acceptable and feasible.
The results are impressive. Significant improvements in
both behavior and health have occurred in projects assisted
by the Manoff Group that have been formally evaluated,
Nutrition Communication/Behavior Change Project, Egypt
Healthy Mother/Healthy Child Project, Applied
Nutrition Project (Dominican Republic), Zlatna,
Romania Lead Project, Social
Marketing of Vitamin A [167KB pdf], Peru
Hygiene Improvement [188KB pdf] and the Indonesia
Applying the behavior-centered
Behavior-Centered Programming normally includes the following
Behavior-change communication (BCC) activities are a key component of this strategy and help:
Review existing information on the health problem and related behaviors
Identify the main groups who will solve the problem. (These may include mothers, fathers, mothers-in-law, community leaders and health workers.)
Conduct in-depth research with the participant groups. (This research is predominantly qualitative and frequently includes TIPs).
- Define each group's current behaviors, ideal behaviors
and feasible behaviors.
- Analyze barriers and resistance to changing behavior (as well as motivating factors and supports for improved [more healthful] behaviors).
- Develop a comprehensive behavior change strategy to move people from their current behavior to improved behaviors. This is done with the collaboration of partners.
The overall behavior-change strategy may also include recommendations on training, policy changes, service improvements, new technologies, community mobilization and other appropriate actions based on the behavioral analysis. During implementation, we consult with participant groups periodically to make adjustments to the strategy, activities, communication channels, materials and messages.
- Address barriers and resistances to new behaviors.
- Provide information and specific strategies.
- Motivate participant groups to action.