Published: 07th July 2021
Why this quiz game, developed with art from kids in Chennai's Kannagi Nagar, can help children beat COVID stigma
InkLink Charitable Trust worked with children of Kannagi Nagar to develop Go Stigma Go, a quiz game to allay fear, anxiety amid COVID. We find out more
Experts are of the opinion that the third wave of COVID might affect children more. This adds an added level of stress and fear to an already long-drawn pandemic. Even if the disease might not affect some, the fear and anxiety is sure to wreak havoc on children and their parents' mental health. This is only amplified by the amount of stigma surrounding the disease. To address these issues, a Chennai-based NGO, InkLink Charitable Trust, has developed a quiz game called Go Stigma Go. The game, which has been developed in association with UNICEF, seeks to alleviate some of that fear and stigmatisation surrounding the disease and even the vaccines.
Speaking about how the game was developed, Kaustav Sengupta, Founder of InkLink, says, "We involved children from Kannagi Nagar to make various types of artwork related to COVID and the stigma surrounding it. It took around a month for these children to work on the art. Around 12 children from the area were involved in making the quiz game." The game asks questions like 'Some particular community can spread the virus' or 'Only elderly people die of COVID-19' to which children have to answer in the affirmative or negative. There are four sets of questions with the correct answer given at the end of the book.
With the help of UNICEF, InkLink has managed to take the game to various schools across India. "We have made the game available for free on our website, to be downloaded as a PDF. UNICEF's strong network of teachers' association has helped the game reach far and wide, including schools in Sri Lanka," says Kaustav. "Teachers send it across to students or their parents via their school group or WhatsApp and then the students are asked to answer the questions," adds Kaustav.
InkLink has been working with the children of Kannagi Nagar for around eight years and over the last year, they have also developed a comic strip to spread awareness about the virus. "The comic books were based on information about COVID-19, proper hand hygiene and protocols like social distancing and also stigmatisation. These comic books were released in Tamil, English, Hindi and other regional languages," says Kaustav. "Most of the information available online are focused on adults. But we wanted to do something with the children and for the children," explains Kaustav about the initiative.