Professor David Swann & The ‘Life-Saving Lullabies’ Team wins Best in Class for Social Impact at the 2020 Good Design Awards
We are pleased to report that the Life-Saving Lullabies project has been announced as the Best in Class for Social Impact as part of the Good Design Awards 2020! The annual Good Design Awards program is one of the oldest and most prestigious international design awards in the world, promoting excellence in design and innovation since 1958. See the announcement here including the comments from the Good Design Jury:
“A really creative and well-designed solution which shows the bringing together of two things that don’t normally go hand in hand (health info and singing lullabies), to produce a positive social and health outcome. The simplicity and very human nature of this solution to a deeply embedded cultural challenge is really inspiring”
The annual Good Design Awards are managed by Good Design Australia, an international design promotion organisation committed to promoting the importance of design to business, industry, government and the general public and the critical role it plays in creating a better, safer and more prosperous world.
Life-Saving Lullabies is a research project bringing together St John Zambia with investigators from Sheffield Hallam University and University of Huddersfield, including Professor David Swann as Principle Investigator. The objective of the UKRI GCRF-funded Life-Saving Lullabies project is to define, develop and deliver a zero-cost, innovation strategy that is responsive to current maternal child health needs (MCH).
The Life-Saving Lullabies Team
Professor David Swann (Principal Investigator, Sheffield Hallam University)
Dr James Reid (Co-Investigator, University of Huddersfield)
Professor Barry Doyle (Co-Investigator, University of Huddersfield)
Morrice Muteba (CEO St John Zambia)
Across the world, caregivers have sung sentimental and traditional folk lullabies to their babies for over four millennia with many transcending the generations as oral tradition. Ethnomusicological studies of lullabies texts have uncovered that lullabies are imbued with both covert and overt orientated objectives; from an expression of love and affection as well as a pacifier for mothers’ to reclaim precious time for work or sleep. Until now, the potential for extending the functional purpose of lullaby lyrics as a methodological tool for delivering essential knowledge and survival skills to support behaviour change and the development of better parenting practices has been overlooked. This project is the first study to use lullaby as a creative methodological tool for imparting critical MCH knowledge and skills.
The study responds to President Lunga’s emergency public health call on 09 May 2019 and explores the potential of a zero-cost maternal health intervention – Life-Saving Lullabies. The project involves creating new educational lullabies to support the transition of adolescents into motherhood, and to impart critical health information to reduce maternal and neonatal deaths in Zambia: such as being aware of the danger signs in pregnancy; the importance of family planning; attending clinic for ante-natal appointments and births; and a memorial lullaby to provide bereavement support for young mothers. Read more about the project on the UKRI website here and watch a video showcasing a ‘family planning’ lullaby song conceived and performed by Kayosha MCH volunteers here.
David Swann is a Professor in Design and Research Lead for the Department of Art & Design. He is a double graduate of the Royal College of Art (MDes Industrial Design – 1991 and PhD – 2011). His design research is grounded by frugal innovation and global healthcare challenges.
In 2014, David won the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design’s World Design Impact Prize. In the same year he was selected to participate in the UK’s inaugural GREAT Festival of Creativity, an international showcase highlighting the best of British innovation. In 2015, David was a finalist in Unicef’s Wearables for Good Challenge with WAAA! In 2016, the London Design Museum relocated to the Grade II listed former Commonwealth Institute building in Holland Park. David’s LifeHacket and ABC Syringe were both included in its inaugural exhibition. David’s frugal innovations can be found in the permanent collections of the London Science Museum, The Design Museum and the MUDAC.
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