Health Impact

We are proud to report that the most recent survey we conducted found people with access to health messages on Talking Books were:

  1. 50% more likely to use bed nets
  2. 50% more likely to wash their hands with soap
  3. 32% more likely to register their child’s birth

As part of our monitoring system in our UNICEF partnership, we surveyed over 1,000 Talking Book users and Non-Talking Book users in November of 2015. You can view the full survey here:


More Background on Our Health Impact

Literacy Bridge partnered with UNICEF and ARM in 2013 to use the Talking Book as a platform for UNICEF’s Communication for Development messaging strategy. Literacy Bridge recorded local-language messages on 12 key health behaviors onto the Talking Book and distributed them to 4,400 households. The goal of the program was to increase knowledge about the key health behaviors, change attitudes about health and social practices, and increase the adoption of practices that improve health and well being of individuals and communities.

Literacy Bridge measured progress towards these goals through four data sources:

  1. focus groups & key expert interviews
  2. usage statistics
  3. user feedback
  4. surveys

The surveys from late 2015 measured the knowledge, changing attitudes, and increasing the adoption of key health practices in 12 treatment and 12 control villages. Among the many statistically significant differences across the 12 behaviors, it found that people with access to health messages on Talking Books were 50% more likely to use bed nets and 50% more likely to wash their hands with soap.

Based on statistically significant differences between our randomly selected control and treatment communities, our program did appear to lead a significant portion of the target population to, register child births (32% of those not doing this already began doing it), wash their hands with soap (36%-55% of those not washing during each of the five targeted times were now doing so), and sleep under bednets (34% of pregnant women and children of those not previously doing this began doing so.)