Top-rated charity

Family Empowerment Media

Family Empowerment Media

Cause area: Improving human wellbeing

Family Empowerment Media (FEM) is an evidence-driven nonprofit committed to eliminating maternal deaths and other health burdens from unintended pregnancies. FEM produces and air radio-based social and behavioural change campaigns on family planning to empower women and men who want to delay or prevent pregnancy to consistently use contraception.

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What problem is Family Empowerment Media working on?

218 million sexually active women in low- and middle-income countries do not use effective contraceptives despite wanting to avoid pregnancy. This unmet need results in 85 million unintended pregnancies and 70,000 maternal deaths yearly. Every fifth maternal death occurs in Nigeria, where lack of knowledge is among the top reasons for contraceptive non-use.

What does Family Empowerment Media do?

Family Empowerment Media (FEM) has developed multiple evidence-based, context-sensitive, and impactful radio campaigns. In 2021, FEM reached 5.6 million listeners up to 870 times in a three-month pilot campaign in Kano State. In a time period overlapping with FEM’s intervention, the contraceptive uptake in Kano rose by 75% among all women, corresponding to 250,000 new contraceptive users. Encouraged by these results, FEM launched a nine-month rollout campaign in Kano State and scale-up proofs-of-concept in three new states in Nigeria: Kogi, Anambra, and Ondo.

Three notable aspects of FEM’s work include:

  1. Strategic formative research: FEM conducts in-depth research to learn about its target audience, the barriers to contraceptive uptake, and how people consume media. This research informs its content creation and broadcasting.
  2. Engaging content creation: FEM produces engaging, educational, and entertaining content with the support of local writers, voice actors, and production studios. This includes ads, Q&A shows, serial dramas, and first-person stories.
  3. Meaningful stakeholder engagement: FEM’s radio campaigns are reviewed by religious leaders, the state Ministry of Health, and medical authorities. The content ends with “brought to you by the state Ministry of Health in partnership with FEM.” This input allows FEM to develop culturally tailored content that is truly empowering.

FEM is an early-stage organisation that launched in September 2020 with support from the Charity Entrepreneurship Incubation Program.

Why is FEM one of our top-rated charities?

FEM meets our criteria to be a top-rated charity based on the recommendation of one of our trusted evaluators, Founders Pledge. Founders Pledge has conducted an extensive report on Mass Media Interventions in general (much of which covers FEM's work specifically). They also recently provided FEM a grant of $70,000 USD and indicated that its work looked promising. Since then, they have conducted an extensive evaluation of evaluation of FEM (currently unpublished) from which they found FEM was highly cost-effective.

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