In Malawi, radio and ICTs are helping the population to learn about health issues

Advancing participatory communication

Enabling community dialogue

Promoting gender equality

Raising farmer’s voice

In an article recently published on SciDevNet, we learn that public health practioners in Malawi are turning to radio and ICTs to efficiently inform and educate the public about important health issues.

Radio, and particularly the series Moyo ndi Mpamba (Life is precious – a local programme) is the primary component to disperse health-related information. Through this radio drama, the listeners get to follow the characters in their daily lives as they face challenges. For the listeners, it is a good way to learn as they hear the characters address and cope with these situations.  They can in turn apply that in their lives.

The team from the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs (JHU-CCP) based in USA is also using SMS and Facebook to reach and get feedback from the audience. As JHU-CCP team leader Chancy Maulauka explains: “Alternative feedback platforms could have been letters and phone calls, but letters take long to arrive, and phone calls are way more expensive than SMS.” He adds: “The Facebook platform allows audience members to interact, sparking interpersonal discussions that expand into communities.”

According to Mauluka, this project has reached 55% of its target audience, raising awareness on HIV, malaria, family planning and child health.

Read the full article on SciDevNet.

Photo: © Trygve Bolstad / Panos