Working with the Media to Get Family Planning Messages Out in Anambra, Nigeria
The Challenge Initiative (TCI) has helped to support Anambra State Social and Behavior Change Communication (SBCC) Committee, the state’s Advocacy Core Group (ACG) and an Interfaith forum to work together to promote discussions about family planning with the ultimate goal of improving social norms in the state. The groups identified mass media as an appropriate tool for doing just this. A member of the Interfaith forum, Mrs. Ngozi Ume-Okonkwo, who is also a program presenter with Kpakpando FM (98.7), facilitated the donation of 12 slots of free airtime on Kpakpando FM (98.7) as part of the program tagged “Egwu agba ochie” to promote family planning messages. “Egwu agba ochie” is a one-hour radio phone-in program.
The program featured the State Health Educator and TCI’s Demand Generation Technical Support Lead. They spoke about and responded to questions about family planning. Over the next six months, members of the Advocacy Core Group and SBCC Committee will speak on various topics related to family planning.
The public is engaged with the radio program, with an average of 12 callers and many more WhatsApp messages during the time slot. The allocation of free airtime is significant because it indicates the state’s willingness to find ways to finance demand generation activities, and shows how they can be sustained without TCI funding.