New Partnerships with CARE in Haiti, Ethiopia, and Bangladesh
Updated: Nov 24, 2021
Amplio has new projects underway with CARE International in Haiti, Ethiopia, and Bangladesh. This isn’t the first time we’ve partnered. The CARE Ghana Pathways Project (2014-2016) used Talking Books to train and empower over 6,000 women farmers to improve their food security, nutrition, and livelihoods. The women listened to Talking Books during their weekly Village Savings and Loan Association (VSLA) meetings and with their households. (You can see the final Pathways evaluation here.)
In a close-out survey, both female and male respondents said that Talking Books reinforced Pathways training and also offered new knowledge, with a focus on gender. The three most popular Talking Book messages were about growing soybeans and groundnuts, nutrition during pregnancy, and shared household decision-making.
CARE’s new Talking Book programs are in various stages of implementation.
CARE Bangladesh: Nutrition and Women’s Empowerment
In Bangladesh, CARE’s Joint Action for Nutrition Outcomes (JANO) project will use Talking Books to share knowledge and promote positive social and behavior change in the areas of climate-smart agriculture, nutrition, health, WASH, gender equality, and women’s empowerment. Funded by the European Union and Austrian Development Agency, the JANO project supports Bangladesh’s National Plan of Action for Nutrition.
“This is Amplio's first foray into Asia, which is both exciting and also a challenge. The JANO project is working closely with local government structures in an innovative and best-practices approach that will set the stage for program sustainability,” said Lindsay Dakan, Global Partnerships Program Manager, Amplio.
"For this project, Talking Books will be in the hands of community volunteers supporting mothers’ groups. We’re eager to see how our technology resonates with this audience and learn how we need to adapt our system and processes for Bangladesh. CARE expects the project to reach over 80,000 people.”
CARE Ethiopia: Adolescent Sexual Health
In Ethiopia, many adolescent girls are vulnerable to early or forced marriage, female genital cutting, and sexual and gender-based violence. To address these issues, CARE is implementing the Act With Her project in collaboration with the Government of Ethiopia and Pathfinder International. Funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the project works across sectors and at individual, community, and systems levels to improve gender equality and empower adolescent girls.
CARE introduced Talking Books as a strategy for reaching nomadic pastoralist communities in the Afar region. Community “near-peer” mentors (ages 18–24) are using Talking Books to share sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) messages and facilitate learning and discussion with girls and boys groups. Topics covered include puberty, menstruation, health, nutrition, education, safety, gender, and economic empowerment.
“CARE Ethiopia typically delivers their SRHR curriculum through in-person weekly training, but that approach wasn’t working with these very hard-to-reach migrating pastoralist communities. So they came to the Talking Book,” Dakan said.
“In April, we conducted our first quarterly review to look at their usage data. The team is still getting an understanding of how to use Talking Books effectively with the boys and girls groups and making sure the facilitators are well-versed with the technology. Also, they’ve had trouble reaching communities, because of the security situation. Building on the success and lessons learned from this project, we are currently in talks with CARE about applying Talking Books to another SRHR program in Ethiopia.”
CARE Haiti: Agriculture, Health, and Economic Empowerment
In Haiti, Talking Books are being implemented through a project named Appui à la Sécurité Alimentaire, au Renforcement et à l’Amélioration Nutritionnelle dans la Grande Anse (ASARANGA), funded by the European Union. CARE will use Talking Books to deliver audio content about sustainable agriculture, financial literacy, maternal and child health, nutrition, and gender via farmers' groups, mothers' groups, and VSLAs.
“The CARE Haiti project is getting ready to launch. They have finalized their program specification, which is a tool our partners use to plan and set up the structure of their Talking Book program, and they are now in the final stages of producing their audio content,” Dakan said. "The CARE Haiti project is exciting because it’s a new region and context for Talking Books. Also, we’re collaborating with a wonderful, highly engaged, dedicated program team. It’s been a real pleasure to work with them."