Facts for Life saves lives!

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Facts for Life saves lives!

Post by mr.banker on Wed Mar 25, 2009 9:46 am

Facts for Life saves lives!

year, nearly 11 million children die from preventable causes before
reaching their fifth birthday. Millions more survive only to face
diminished futures, unable to develop to their full potential.

of these deaths can be avoided if parents and caregivers understand
what to do when illness strikes and how to recognize the danger signs
that signal the need for medical help. Facts for Life presents, in
simple language, the most authoritative information about practical,
effective and low-cost ways to protect children's lives and health.
Everyone has the right to know this information.

Since it was
first published in 1989, Facts for Life has become one of the world's
most popular books, with more than 15 million copies in use in 215
languages in 200 countries. The book is co-published by UNICEF, WHO,
UNESCO, UNFPA, UNDP, UNAIDS, WFP and the World Bank.

revised edition of Facts for Life has updated information on the major
causes of childhood illnesses and death, including HIV/AIDS,
Emergencies and Accidents. You can access the complete Facts for Life
content on this website, as well as the PDF and text-only versions.

We urge everyone to share and use these health messages to help save children's lives.

What is Facts for Life?

* Foreword
* The purpose of Facts for Life
* The structure of Facts for Life
* Essential Facts for Life messages
* A guide for communicating Facts for Life
* Glossary


year, nearly 11 million children die from preventable causes before
reaching their fifth birthday, many of them during the first year of
life. Millions more survive only to face diminished lives, unable to
develop to their full potential.

This terrible toll in human
suffering and forgone prosperity can be vastly reduced. Three fourths
of all child visits to health facilities for medical care and 7 out of
10 childhood deaths result from just five causes: pneumonia, diarrhoea,
measles, malaria and malnutrition. The knowledge and capacity to
prevent and treat all five causes exist.

Facts for Life aims to
make life-saving knowledge easily available to everyone. It presents
the most important facts that people have a right to know to prevent
child deaths and diseases, and to protect women during pregnancy and
childbirth. Its messages are simple, and people in every corner of the
world can act on them.

World Bank, Facts for Life can save many lives if its messages reach
their intended audience. We urge all communicators health workers,
the media, government officials, non-governmental organizations,
teachers, religious leaders, employers, trade unions, women's groups,
community organizations and others to join in a common cause to
protect all children.

Carol Bellamy
Executive Director
United Nations Children's Fund
Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland
World Health Organization
Koichiro Matsuura
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
Thoraya Ahmed Obaid
Executive Director
United Nations Population Fund
Mark Malloch Brown
United Nations Development Programme
Dr. Peter Piot
Executive Director
Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS
Catherine Bertini
Executive Director
World Food Programme
James D. Wolfensohn
The World Bank

The purpose of Facts for Life

Facts for Life aims to provide
parents and other caregivers with the information they need to save and
improve children's lives. The challenge is to ensure that everyone
knows and understands these facts and is motivated to put them into

The messages contained in Facts for Life are based on
the latest scientific findings, as established by medical experts
around the world. These facts are presented in non-technical language
so they can be understood and acted upon easily by people who do not
have a scientific background. Doing so can save lives.

can help communicate the Facts for Life messages health workers,
teachers, students, government officials, radio broadcasters,
journalists, community workers, religious leaders and people in all
walks of life young and old, family members, friends and neighbours,
men, women and children.

The structure of Facts for Life

Facts for Life consists of 13
chapters, each dealing with one major cause of childhood illness and
death. Every chapter has three parts: an introduction, several key
messages and supporting information.

The introduction is a brief
and powerful 'call to action'. It summarizes the extent of the problem
and why taking action is so important. The introduction aims to inspire
people to get involved and share the information widely. The
introduction can be used to motivate political leaders and the mass

The key messages, addressed to parents and other
caregivers, are the essence of Facts for Life. They contain the
essential information that people need to protect their children. The
key messages are clear, brief and practical, so people can easily
understand them and take the recommended action. These messages are
meant to be communicated often and in various ways.

supporting information elaborates on the key messages, providing
additional details and advice. This information is particularly useful
for health workers or anyone who wants to know more. It can also be
used to answer caregivers' questions.
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Re: Facts for Life saves lives!

Post by mr.banker on Wed Mar 25, 2009 10:03 am

A guide for communicating Facts for Life

Communication goes far
beyond providing people with information. It involves listening to
people, sharing information in interesting and accessible ways and
helping them understand its relevance to their lives. Communicating
Facts for Life calls for an interactive, two-way process of sharing
ideas, knowledge and opinions. This guide aims to help that process.

Reaching the caregivers

and caregivers, including older siblings and other family members, are
the primary audience for Facts for Life information. They can be
reached through a combination of interpersonal and mass media channels.
Those who have an influence on people's health practices are the most
effective communicators. They may be health workers, teachers,
government extension workers, religious and community leaders, members
of youth and women's groups and non-governmental organizations,
employers and business people, members of trade unions, social workers,
artists and entertainers.

Factors that influence communication

reactions to new information are influenced by how, where and from whom
they receive it. These factors can mean the difference in whether or
not people act on the information. People are more likely to trust
information and act on it if:

* they hear it repeatedly from many different sources
* the person delivering it is well known and trusted
* they understand how it can help their families
* it is communicated in familiar language
* they are encouraged to discuss it and to ask questions to clarify
their understanding of what needs to be done, when and why.

Translating and adapting the messages

messages presented in the international version of Facts for Life need
to be translated and, in many cases, adapted to local situations and
customs. In doing so, it is crucial to check the adapted text with
local health authorities before printing and disseminating to ensure
that the messages remain technically valid.

Effective communication

There are many
different ways of communicating, but whether you are working
person-to-person within a community, advocating with political leaders
or developing messages to be publicized inthe mass media, the basic
principles are the same:

* Know who needs the Facts for Life
information and find out about their living conditions, language,
customs and level of knowledge. This will help to identify the messages
that are more relevant, more easily understood and more likely to be
accepted and acted upon.
* When adapting or translating the
messages, be sure to use simple language that people understand. Do not
overload the messages with too many actions or technical details. Keep
to the verified information in Facts for Life. If the messages are
adapted, their accuracy should be verified.
* Make sure the
audience understands the information and knows how to put it into
practice. This can be done by sharing the draft messages and visual
materials with parents and other caregivers in the community, asking
them open-ended questions and encouraging discussion to determine
whether the intended message is both clearly understood and feasible.
Utilize their feedback to adjust the messages and visual aids.
Make the message relevant to people's lives. Find ways to make Facts
for Life messages interesting and meaningful to each community, such as
by illustrating them with local examples.
* Select the
communication channels and media that are most effective at reaching
the target audience. Pay particular attention to existing media and use
these media as much as possible. Do not rely on a single means of
communication but instead use a mix of channels and media so that the
audience receives the message repeatedly and in many variations. The
mix may include:
o mass media, such as radio, television, newspapers and comic books;
o small media, such as posters, audio cassettes, leaflets, brochures,
videos, slide sets, flip charts, T-shirts, badges and loudspeaker
o interpersonal channels, such as health workers,
religious or community leaders, women's and youth organizations, school
teachers, development workers and government officials.

Communicating through the mass media

Radio, newspapers and
television are excellent tools for reaching large numbers of people to
introduce and reinforce new information. Repetition strengthens memory,
so publicizing the same message in various media helps people retain
the message and encourages them to act on it. The information can be
presented through interviews, news articles, discussions, radio or
television drama, puppet shows, comics, jingles or songs, quizzes,
contests and call-in shows.

* Newspaper and magazine articles
are more effective where literacy rates are high. In areas where
literacy is low, other means of reaching the target audience should be
utilized. In some situations, comics and illustrations can be used to
communicate with adults as well as children.
* If the messages are
aired on radio or television, try to ensure that they are broadcast at
a time when the target audience is listening or watching. Do not rely
only on free public service announcements (PSAs) that are aired during
off-peak hours. Broadcast the messages during popular programmes so
that they reach a wide audience. Work with producers of radio or
television programmes to integrate messages into the scripts of popular
television shows or radio dramas, or contact popular disc jockeys who
will agree to discuss the messages on radio call-in programmes.
* Use respected, credible media and public personalities to communicate and reinforce messages in the media programmes.
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