In 2011, Thaliand was hit by the worst flood in 50 years which created a state of emergency in 60 of the country’s 77 provinces. One lesson from the disaster was that knowledge about what to do in the case of flooding is not widespread and that children are particularly at risk when disaster strikes. To overcome this, UNESCO Bangkok is using gamification to teach children what to do.
Sai Fah the Flood Fighter Game is a computer game that is designed to show children and teenagers life-saving skills in emergency situations. Using the classic run-and-jump style, players must guide a child called Sai Fah through typical scenarios that arise during floods as he tries to find his mother. The game details what occurs before, during and after a flood and helps users understand how to prepare a house before a flood; what to do if you encounter dangerous wildlife during a flood; and advocates the importance of working with and assisting other people affected by the disaster. Over multiple levels, players learn how to avoid rising water, use a torch as an emergency signal and dodge electrical surges from overhead wires.
Using gamification helps engage people, especially children, in serious topics in a way that is meaningful and effective. The game, which was initiated by UNSESCO Bangkok, with funding from the Japanese government, and support from The Department of Non-formal Education at the Ministry of Education in Thailand, launched in January 2014 and is available for iPhone and Android.
This article has been translated, in part, from an article by Christoph which appeared on our German platform.