Union Minister for Jal Shakti Gajendra Singh Shekhawat launches Swachh Bharat Mission Academy

New Delhi: Union Minister for Jal Shakti, Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat launched the Swachh Bharat Mission Academy at an event here today as part of the ongoing week-long behaviour change campaign ‘GandagiMukt Bharat’. Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawatlaunched SBM Academy by dialling the designated IVR toll-free number and listening to the welcome message of the SBM academy. For sustaining the behaviour change and promoting the capacity building of the key stakeholders i.e. Swachhagrahis and other field functionaries, this IVR based free mobile online learning course on ODF Plus will be crucial in achieving goals underlined in Phase 2 of SBM(G).

The Union Minister said that the Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen) has transformed rural India by manifesting into a Jan Andolan for sanitation – unlike any other the world has ever seen. This led to the historic achievement of Open Defecation Free (ODF) declaration by all villages, districts and states on 2nd October, 2019 thus making rural India ODF. Taking forward the extraordinary success, Phase II of the SBM (G) was launched early this year, which focuses on ODF sustainability and Solid and Liquid Waste Management (SLWM). The program will also work towards ensuring that no one is left behind and everyone uses a toilet. He added that Swachh Bharat Mission Academy, with its mobile based technology will significantly boost the capacity building efforts in training of Swachhagrahis as well as PRIs members, community-based organizations, NGOs, SHGs and others who are associated with phase 2 of SBM(G).

Speaking on the occasion, Union Minister of Statefor Jal Shakti, Shri Rattan Lal Kataria congratulated SBM (G) team of central and state government officials, & countless Swachhagrahis for tireless efforts in last five years for triggering a massive behaviour change across the country in rural community members and making the programme a true Jan Andolan. He urged them to continue working with same spirit in SBM Phase 2 as well.

Secretary, Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation (DDWS), Shri ParameswaranIyer, elaborated on the SBM Academy, its functionalities and key roles envisioned under Phase 2 of SBM(G). He said that phone-based academy will provide this free of charge, access to on-demand, anytime, anywhere training course with high quality and standardized content over basic mobile phone & also improve the knowledge and interpersonal communication skills in order to enhance the quality of interaction with the beneficiaries. The IVR based training course contains a 60 minutesmodule spanning various topics under ODF-S as well as SLWM. The SBM Academy course has four chapters, each with four audio lessons and a multiple-choice quiz at the end of the chapter. To be considered successful, the user must answer at least 50% of the questions correctly.

As of now the content of SBM Academy is in Hindi and the users are expected to dial in to a toll free number (18001800404) and complete listening to the entire content in their mobile phones.

The Ministers also interacted online with few swachhagrahis, field level functionaries and state officials. They urged them to encourage people to fully utilize this free learning course.