This presentation is divided in two main parts: Snapshot of Farm Radio’s work over the past ten years Insights into some of the key characteristics that make Farm Radio so successful
Through it we want to highlight two things that we want to keep in view, looking forward: The programming delivered by our partners, that reaches millions and is changing the lives of millions through learning, linkages and changes in practice and behaviour; and The potential to take this programming -- quality rural communication programming about ag, nutrition and health -- to the next level, making it transformative, sustainable and even more powerful...
But first, a bit more about us and a few of things that make Farm Radio tick...
And here’s some background on how we work:
A few things we say a lot: We are not a radio station We don’t own radio stations We don’t start radio stations
One of the beautiful things about FRI is that we work with existing broadcasters A key part of our vision for sustainable local solutions And part of the reason it’s cost effective
We build capacities: Central to our mission FRI is in the process of revamping its In-Station Training approach… Resources are tailormade for broadcasters as a unique set of “intermediaries”
We use radio because -- as a technology -- it’s Cheapest and Best…
We do provide some strategic inputs to the technical capacity of stations and community groups -- digital recorders and editors, wind-up solar radios… and we have invested in innovations that are transforming and strengthening radio by blending it with other digital communication technologies
However the focus of our work is on content and programming not the physical nuts and bolts of radio. And even before that it’s about relationships and trusted voices.
Good radio is based on and builds relationships of trust (embodied in farm radio programs) that support deep, ongoing “conversations” between farmers+ and programmers+ (skilled broadcasters). People talking to each other. We leverage the relationships of trust with farmers and conversations about farming to start dialogue and share info and experience about a host of other issues critical to rural communities: nutrition, maternal and child health, youth mental health, climate change adaption, etc.
We’re currently working on the ground (in addition to on the air) in ten countries. Expect to be in Nigeria and Senegal in 2017-18
A little radio goes a long way…
It’s a small device… but it has BIG reach…
According to statistics shared by Africa’s Voices Foundation for WRD 2017: 94% of adults in Africa listen to radio weekly - more than TV or smart phones
And our own data shows that...
The last decade has seen FRI introduce an evidence-based, systematic approach to agricultural radio, working closely with public extension
Farm Radio’s work represents a new approach to showing Evidence of results=ag outcomes, which continues to set FRI apart today.
And in the same vein, FRI has pioneered new ways to link ICTs with radio for an “interactive” approach, which is now our trademark
The flagship of interactive radio is the PRC.
A systematic approach to addressing decision-making, know-how and uptake of good ag practice.
Outcome oriented projects that reach large numbers of farmers and rural citizens
Farm Radio has done more than 100 PRCs in the last ten years.
And building on its success, FRI introduced the PRS and the RMP. Also the Echo Campaign.
We developed an approach to in-station training
We introduced innovations with mobiles and ICT that became what we now call Uliza, which means Ask in Swahili
We also partnered with other agriculture initiatives - number of projects, partners, farmers reached (we have a document with this)
Our work in the last ten years, include ground-breaking initiatives supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation helped us learn and to talk what we were learning and achieving...
E.g. When the programs are good… Farmers listen!
This is especially significant given the reach of FRI programming… e.g. 65m (rural) and 140m (total)
Through more than 50 outcome evaluation surveys of African farmers in FRI intervention areas, we have found that a typical interactive radio program about agriculture on a radio station is listened to regularly by 50-60% of potential listeners (depending on country and region).
In a recent survey of 2,600 farm radio listeners in northern Ghana, 53% indicated that they “always” listen to their ag radio show; 41% indicated that they “sometimes” listen… So when they listen, the listen regularly...
In addition to listening, Farmers are increasing their knowledge and learning
The same meta-analysis of OEs indicated 50% learn
Irish Aid 2014: A 2014 study in 4 countries showed that, on average, quiz scores were 50% higher for listeners than non-listeners.
The first years of PRC campaigns did 20%...
A 2014 study with Irish Aid in 4 countries showed that on average, people in listening communities are 5x more likely to to take up a practice featured in a participatory radio campaign.
And that is the just the beginning… Often it is higher… as high as 45% Farmers copy other farmers… Recently FRI introduced the Echo Campaign to increase application rates… Impressive given how risk-averse farmers are as a group
In the Ghana survey mentioned, ninety-two percent of listeners indicated that agricultural radio helps increase their incomes.
What is also encouraging is the number of organisations that have started to see and experience the power to radio to achieve results, at scale and cost effectively…
IITA, CIMMYT, Africa Rice, ILRI
IDRC, IFAD, WFP, Irish Aid, GIZ,
CRS, ACDI-VOCA, NCBA-CLUSA, Digital Green, Grameen Foundation
Here are two projects from our work in the last ten years, both supported by the Gates Foundation
OFSP: A major project with a singular focus…
Critical issues Link between ag and nutrition Link between production and consumption
Again: Scale 3.5 million households tuned in Estimated number of new OFSP growers: 432,000 Estimated number of new households eating OFSP: 650,000 Number of people registered as ICT subscribers and using FRI’s beep4services or beep2vote service during the radio campaigns: 47,216
OFSP also featured drama, highlighting the importance of creative formats to change perceptions
2 seasons of My Children, a drama about family life that highlighted the many issues associated with OSFP
This photo: Voice actors perform a drama on mental health in Malawi. This was part of FRI’s ground-breaking integrated mental health project in Malawi and Tanzania.
Staples Major project Reach very large numbers of farmers with high outcome rates Enabled FRI to respond to GOE requests to develop programming in response to the 2015-16 drought
More stats Capacities built and programming delivered on 14 radio stations 10,000 women in over 200 groups Campaigns on tef, wheat, maize, beans and sorghum Production Post harvest Marketing
The tef campaigns: More than 2.4 million adult Ethiopians heard PRC programs on improving tef planting practices in four regions (Tigray, Oromiya, Amhara, SSNPR) More than three-quarters of a million households adopted at least one improved tef planting practice in the four project regions, far exceeding the Staples project goal of at least 180,000 households. The project was extremely cost-effective, spending only $0.38 U.S. to reach farmers who tried improved tef planting practices, and $0.03 to deliver an hour of agricultural information to Ethiopian listeners.
Mulu, FRI’s radio officer, interviewing a farmer in Ethiopia.
As with other major projects, on the of key outcomes is increased capacity among broadcasters and their partners and a hugely increase level of farmer participation in the dialogue.
Over the years, Farm Radio’s work in digital innovation has cumulated in Uliza: mobiles providing interaction and increasing the power of radio
In fact, Uliza’s potential for interaction helped Farm Radio introduce a new program model called the Listening Post.
Citizen engagement enabling adaptive management for Program (4 Gates grantees -- 6 LP series: PICS-Purdue, Sweet Potato-IITA, NitroFix/Innoculants-N2A; MEDA-Cassava) and Policy (governments - 1 series for GAC on Canadian Aid) 12,000 individuals and 65,000 unique interactions 16,000 voice messages left
2016 paper: Building an ecosystem around data: using interactive radio for accountability to farmers in Tanzania What motivates farmers to interact: closing the feedback loop/reporting back, questions answered, services delivered The role of infomediaries in ensuring that different stakeholders access data that is useful to them. Building effective partnerships for accountability and responsiveness. Growing teeth: Role of different kinds of intermediaries
The Uliza interface, which we would love to demo for you in a few minutes
One of the most recent LPs, one with a high profile and geared towards policy…
In 2016, FRI did a Listening Post for Global Affairs Canada You can see the overall numbers And then some specifics in relation to Question 2 on gender
We thought we would highlight a few key elements of what makes FRI unique and
what we see as underlying our success to date...
Although it’s only radio in our name, our work combines Radio, Mobiles, Digital Solutions and of course face-to-face discussion.
Radio provides the foundation and an umbrella…as we go forward, a platform
Face-to-face discussions, in groups and with extension agents and other intermediaries, and especially mobile phones provide an unprecedented opportunity for interaction, feedback and contributions.
Digital solutions give us access to large amounts of data and allow us to process it… New tools, like satellite weather maps and Arable Labs Pulse Pod, which measures soil characteristics, will only enrich the range and quality of information accessible to farmers and other rural citizens on the radio...
As you know, it’s increasingly common for farmers to include a mobile in the tools they take to the field, like this farmer here in Arusha, Tanzania…
The amazing penetration of basic mobile phones and increasingly feature and even Android phones in sub-Saharan Africa, inspired us to establish the Hangar, our innovation lab in Arusha...
The Hangar specialises in low cost solutions that increase interactivity Beep to vote, which uses the missed call to poll farmers Beep for info, e.g. on inputs or weather, using IVR
These innovations and how they have been seamlessly and universally applied in our programming has created a new approach, which we call interactive radio.
It Closes the feedback loop, often instantaneously Deepens the connection to farmers, we can remind farmers to listen, remind them of key messages Opens up new channels for info and comm, going both ways Farmers text in, call in; they connect to extension offices And of course farmers have access a wealth of information over the phone We can also ask farmers a huge array of questions What’s important to you? What’s your experience? How are we doing providing a service?
We thought we would share a short clip with some actual audio from some of the programming our partners are doing...
Watch the video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S118_9X4cnk
This is a key part of our vision for Platforms
Partner radio stations will be the sustainable hub of an ecosystem of partners that exchanges, shares, translates knowledge and data and catalyzes measurable change.
Critical for Quality Experts Farmers
Ken Giller N2Africa last week said this was key to success of SILT as it got all bean researchers/stakeholders in Tz to agree on common technical guidelines for NGOs, Govt, research centres, which helps enormously
Building on the foundations of relationships of trust and rich conversations with farmers
FRI programs have tackled Nutrition MNCH Depression among youth Civic issues
As with all our work, programming is both participatory AND outcome-oriented, it involves farmers, puts citizens first but it achieves results...
We aim to have all programming respond to gender issues…
Increasing women’s participation, as we did in the Her Farm Radio project, funded by IFAD, and
Tackling gender head on, talking about women’s role, power dynamics and decision making
The HFR project enabled us to introduce Her Voice On Air, which are now introducing in more and more of work
We use rigorous outcome evaluation methods, which were recently reviewed by ALINe.
Peer reviewed papers published and in prep.
Surveys - for a particular evaluation purpose Uliza for formative research, making data available to farmers…
Two-way communication, farmers leave audio questions for broadcasters on Uliza Gathering info and experiences for sharing on air
The ICT innovations enable real-time feedback by listeners which can provide valuable M&E data. Surveys show the more interaction, the better the results. By giving room for doubt, farmers trust the info more
FRI has developed a sophisticated mapping technique to estimate the coverage and reach of partner stations. This allows us to understand the true impact of a project.
A lot more potential to integrate digital devices as part transforming programs in a platform Pulse pods Satellite data Drones
Also: SOILINFO app ... you put in your GPS and it tells you what soils you are standing on. Would be great to work with them on overlaying maps to target crops to specific areas
Our goal is to transform extension and development practice more generally
It’s a lofty goal but what else could we do given the sort of results that have been achieved in just a decade.
FRI’s impact projects, supported by Gates, bilateral funders, research centres and dozens of international agencies have demonstrated impressive results
There are big numbers Farmers reached Farmers learning Farmers changing their practices
Our vision is to consolidate it, moving from projects and programs to ongoing, sustainable platforms
Farm Radio International
THROUGH THE POWER
OF RADIO 2.0
650radio stations in
○ Public, government
○ Burkina Faso
Participatory Radio Campaigns are changing the way
agricultural radio is done in sub-Saharan Africa.
RESULTS FOR FARMERS
50-60% farmers regularly listen when farm
radio programs meet quality standards
On average, 50% of listeners increase their
knowledge of the topics covered in programs
On average 20% of listeners apply one or more practices
highlighted in a radio campaign.
Since 2011, Farm Radio has worked with over 60 partners
- including major research centres, funding agencies, UN
organisations, international NGOs and governments - to
take over 100 solutions to scale
Tackling vitamin A deficiency by scaling up
the production and consumption of orange-
fleshed sweet potato
RADIO AND ICT
FRI has established a cutting-edge Radio &
ICT innovation lab in Arusha, Tanzania,
that is pioneering solutions to make Radio
2.0 even more powerful.
Experience a demo of FRI’s “Beep4Weather” service. This weather advisory service that goes beyond simply
providing a forecast, including vital information along with weather interpretation via voice at no charge to farmers.
Interactive radio plays a “convening” role
among multiple stakeholders including
government, the private sector, and civil
society creating an ecosystem of partners.
Quality interactive radio programs are a
unique opportunity to address development
issues — from market linkages to nutrition
to mental health.
Programs promote gender equality - by
prioritising women as listeners, putting their
voices on air, and addressing gender
issues head on
Rigorous testing of results across hundreds
of radio programs
Mobiles and digital solutions enable interaction and, with it,
insights into the circumstances of farmers and their
perspectives on change.
FRI’s approach aims to enable traditional
extension systems to work more efficiently,
reach more farmers with crucial
information, and deliver change at scale.