• Amplio

Leveraging Talking Books for Women's Land Rights in Liberia




In November 2021 a different kind of mobile library came to Bong County, Liberia. Through funding from USAID’s Land Evidence for Economic Rights, Gender, and Equality (LEVERAGE) activity and in partnership with Landesa, Amplio Talking Books are bringing information about the Land Rights Act, passed in 2018, to 31 rural communities in the Panta, Gahn, and Wrumah clans...


Specifically, Landesa is leveraging Talking Books for an information campaign to build awareness about women's land rights in Liberia. The project was recently featured on USAID's LandLinks blog. You can read the original post here.


Watch a Landesa/Amplio partner webinar about the Liberia project.


Piloting Talking Books in Liberia


Landesa began field testing Talking Books in 2020, as a way to keep land rights information flowing to rural communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. The team distributed Talking Books through a household listening model, facilitated by community agents. In addition to land rights information and resources, Talking Books included messages about COVID-19 awareness, prevention, and treatment.


The project has continued to scale, reaching communities in Bong, Lofa, Rivercess, Margibi, and Grand Cape Mount. The LEVERAGE program is distributing Talking Books to women-headed households, ethnic minorities, women’s groups, and youth groups.


Organizing Audio Content Into "Chapters" or Playlists


With Amplio's audio content manager, you can tag and organize audio files by community, language, and topic, and create playlists to load onto Talking Books. We want to highlight how the LEVERAGE program has organized its content.

  • For the LEVERAGE program, Talking Book content is organized into eight “chapters” or playlists that explain the Land Rights Act. The content is produced in a variety of local languages and dialects using culturally relevant concepts.

  • Topics include practical lessons such as the steps that communities can take to map their lands and apply for a formal land certificate, how to create by-laws and committees to manage the land as a community, alternative dispute resolution, and the differences between tribal certificates and deeds.

  • The content focuses on women's legal land and property rights, including the legal requirement for equal representation of women on all land management committees — and why it matters.

  • Other messages explain women’s and men’s inheritance rights and land rights, both inside and outside of formal and customary marriages, with an emphasis on the rights of women as citizens and community members.


Innovative Use of Town Hall Meetings and User Feedback to Amplify Community Voices and Perspectives

For the LEVERAGE project, community members can listen to Talking Books individually, with their families, and during group and community meetings. In addition, town hall meetings provide an opportunity for community members to discuss their questions and ideas with local land tenure experts. Women can participate in separate sessions that offer a safe setting for discussing their questions and challenges.


Participants can also record questions and comments directly onto Talking Books. Landesa will use the questions shared through town halls and Talking Book user feedback to inform segments of its nationally broadcast Land Is Life radio show.


Because Talking Books collects usage data and user feedback, Amplio and its partners can monitor message engagement, identify issues and trends, and continually update and improve their content for greater impact. Amplio is currently piloting a new system for processing user feedback. Learn more >


 

Visit USAID's LandLinks website to see a Liberia country profile and learn more about how land rights impact gender equality and women's empowerment.