A plan as to how the research will be conducted:

Assessing the Impact of introducing the phrase ‘a Clean Lake is a Happy Life’, as part of an educational intervention on water sanitation and conservation of Lake Niassa, Mozambique,

Prepared for: Cause to Wonder NGO

Prepared by: Katherine Liakos, Freelance Consultant

July 2015





This study has been planned as an independent exercise to provide an objective assessment on the performance of Cause to Wonder’s work in Mozambique. In particular will assess the impact of the conservation, sanitation and hygiene interventions carried out in March 2014. The results will inform Cause to Wonder’s intervention strategies in the future, and improve the evidence base for its work accomplished previously.  This evaluation will inform Cause to Wonder’s intervention strategies moving forward, and improve the evidence base for its work globally.

As Cause to Wonder continues to grow, this study will be used as the initial basis for future program development. From the results, Cause to Wonder can decide whether to alter performances (or not), design new techniques to increase impact based on the study recommendations, as well as provide evidence for former and potential donors.


Background to Cause to Wonder activities in Mozambique

The interactive magic shows, performed by Cause to Wonder tackled the problem of water pollution from sewage contamination along the shores of Lake Niassa. The interventions were designed to educate Niassa villagers about the dangers of defecating in, or contaminating the lake which provides their main source of food and drinking water, as well as to introduce conservation ideas to them. The storytelling in the performance was visually enhanced by magic tricks to illustrate the negative effects of water contamination from feces or chemicals, a technique intended to captivate the audience. Dry composting was demonstrated, a song  "A clean lake is a happy life" was repeated throughout the show and signs were posted  in each village bearing this same slogan.

The intervention targeted 5 lakeside villages for an estimated total audience of 680, including adults and children. The same show was performed once in each village during late March 2014 and was designed to be interactive to involve and engage the audience. Thus some of the audience (usually children) became part of the magic trick. The program spread the information with the slogan ‘A clean lake is a happy life’. This was translated into the local language Nyanja (also known as Chichewa or Chewa), and was set to a culturally suitable melody and repeated during the performances.



The study has several purposes. Firstly to investigate how the Cause to Wonder performances were received and remembered in the communities and the extent to which the performance teachings (song and general message) have spread through word of mouth amongst villagers or between communities.

In addition the study will assess whether the interventions created a positive effect on hygiene practices and conservation of the lake, in the 5 villages visited in 2014 plus 10 other villages in the Lago district.

Specific Objectives:

  • Investigate if and how the magic trick shows, song and underlying teachings are remembered in the 5 villages visited by Cause to Wonder in 2014.
  • Investigate how the magic tricks and Lisa as a performer were perceived by the local audience and how they place it within their own cultural context (shaman, supernatural, foreigner).
  • Gauge whether or not the message has spread and been transmitted to other members from neighboring villages in the region by word of mouth.
  • Record the awareness of the hygiene and conservation issues highlighted in the shows.
  • Explore what emotions they associate with the performance and Lisa as a figure (fear, joy, happiness, respect, suspicion).
  • Gauge whether there has there been any behavior change: have villagers have subsequently started using composting latrines and washing their clothes and dishes away from the water?



The study approach and methodology have been devised to fulfill the objectives of the impact assessment stipulated in the terms of Cause to Wonder’s expressed intentions for the research.

This study will take a mixed method approach, gathering qualitative and quantitative data through key informant interviews, focus group discussions and simple surveys. The qualitative data will highlight which parts of the show were relevant and beneficial to the beneficiaries- and therefore more likely to deliver the anticipated results-  and which activities and methods were less relevant or irrelevant. It will reveal the general interpretation of the performance and provide an insight into how this understanding fits within the local cultural framework. The quantitative results will provide an overview of current knowledge, attitudes and practice, and an indication of how many participants felt some level of impact from the shows. Data will be collected from the 5 villages visited by cause to wonder plus an estimated 10 other villages in the Niassa lakeshore area.  


Data Collection

This section explains the different tools employed to gather data responding to the evaluation questions and sub-questions and the approach to triangulate evidence from different sources.

The data collection methods employ both quantitative and qualitative techniques, ranging from document review of existing research from the area, to collecting primary data through interviews and focus groups discussions, simple surveys, site visits and direct observations. The main instruments are as follows:

Literature and document review

During the inception phase of this study, a review of previous reports and documents is helpful to piece together existing information, better understand cultural norms on issues related to the study, assess and refine the survey and qualitative tools, and identify best practices. A list of documents used as reference for this study will be provided with the final report.

Key informant interviews

Key Informant Interviews with key stakeholders and local figures will provide in-depth qualitative information to inform the study. They will be conducted with:

·         Village level health workers

·         Village chiefs

·         MWCT project staff

·         Other relevant individuals identified whilst in the field

In general, speaking with key informants at community and institution levels will help to identify the current level of knowledge, attitudes and practice of conservation and water sanitation and hygiene issues.

The Key Informant Interviews will gather information on the:

  • Underlying reasons for water contamination
  • Knowledge, practices and attitudes of local figures of authority/influence and the general community regarding WASH and conservation issues
  • Perceptions and understanding of key figures of authority on the magic tricks and Lisa as a person.
  • Impact of the magic shows on the community during the time elapsed since March 2014

All interviews and discussions will be audio recorded, with written notes taken by the interviewer at the times.

Focus Group Discussions

FGDs will be held with villagers in each community visited within this study in order to understand their lasting impressions, memories and perceptions of the Cause to Wonder performance as well as their current WASH practices. Separate FGDs will be held with 4 different groups within the communities (men, women, children, elderly). The optimal number of participants for a FGD will be between 6 and 10 people, and participants will be randomly selected and invited to join on the morning of the visit to the village.

The focus group discussions will seek to understand:

  • Community inhabitants’ knowledge, attitudes and practice relating to water sanitation issues
  • Establish community perspectives on the characteristics of accepted water sanitation and conservation practices
  • State of hygiene practices in households, villages and health centres
  • Underlying perceptions, motivating factors and barriers within the community, towards/against recommended practice for personal and environmental hygiene as well as conservation issues.

Semi-structured questions are prepared and used to guide the conversation topics and ensure that the discussions remain relevant, but will encourage participants to elaborate on the points they make so that depth can be achieved in the responses.

Simple baseline survey

Given that a small numbers of people will be gathered in focus groups, this is an opportunity to collect some quantitative data on key questions decided upon jointly with Cause to Wonder. In this way, the study will gather some basic statistics during the FGDs to reflect the following general questions:

1.      How is the lake used (water hygiene and sanitation practices)

2.      How many people remember that they have heard about or seen Lisa? 

3.      How many people can remember the performance and song and are able to sing it?

4.      Is there any behavior change evident, that can be attributed to the performances?

For an ice-breaker exercise in the FGD and quick yet discreet way to collect data on how the lake is used, there is an activity that allows participants to place stones to show their response. Participants can place one stone for each response option, or none if they do not wish to respond with that option. This way quantitative data is collected discreetly without individual members having to share their answers with the group. The group will however, see the trends in responses, which can also serve as a factual talking point to open up the discussion.

Overview of all data collection methods to be used in the field work:



Data analysis

Once the field work is complete, the data analysis will bring together and draw conclusions from all survey tools used to collect information. This will include triangulation between qualitative and quantitative data.

Qualitative Data

There will be large amounts of qualitative data gathered from the KIIs, FGDs, and observations. During the qualitative data analysis, it will become possible to draw out the themes, comparisons and for each topic of focus in this study. The qualitative responses will be triangulated with the quantitative data results so that the quality and validity of the data collected can be assured.

Preliminary analysis of the qualitative results will occur in the field whilst reviewing the findings, ensuring that questions being asked are and remain relevant, and (where appropriate) continue to explore the matter in more depth and build a complete picture, rather than gather repetition.

Quantitative Data

The quantitative results will be compared with project objectives, thereby revealing the strengths and/or gaps in Cause to Wonder’s work. Once the field work is complete, the data analysis will draw out responses to the key study questions outlined in the ToR and summarised above. 

Bringing Qualitative and Quantitative data together

Both the quantitative and qualitative information have their separate purposes in the study; they also interlink for triangulation purposes. Both data sets will validate each other, making it easier to identify common practice as well as cause and effect. For example, the number of people who remember the song can be compared with the number of people who said they go to the toilet in the lake, and matched with their general opinions regarding toilet habits to determine whether the message in the song has caused any behaviour change.


The following timeline is based on the assumption that fieldwork commences the week beginning 7th

September, until departure from Mozambique on the 24th September 2015. Video footage and baseline data will be submitted with the final report, however preliminary data may be submitted if available at the time of request.



Planning, preparation and logistics budget

The following is a breakdown of the costs incurred prior to and during data collection in the field, including half of field days worked, plus travel expenses.

Part 1

Part 2

This will include payment for the remaining 50% field days not paid in part 1, the data cleaning and analysis and report writing work as well as any other logistical expenses incurred on behalf of the study.

Estimated cost £2635 GBP or $4128.52 USD