Simple lessons for safer living in local languages
What We Do
We create simple, interactive lessons about health and other topics to help people live more safely.
Our audio-visual lessons are fact-based and designed by specialists in the respective areas of knowledge.
They are then translated into the local languages of communities, so that all people, whatever their level of education, can access information that they can understand.
Our lessons enable people to make their own choices and take more control over their lives.
We use DVDs and Online Lessons to inform and educate the viewer on a range of important topics that can help improve their own lives, and the lives of others around them.
We have been building our portfolio of lessons since we were founded twenty years ago, as Thare Machi The Starfish Initiative, together with our sister organisation, Thare Machi (Isle of Man (registered in 2013).
To ensure that the lessons we send out are accurate and reliable, we seek out the advice and input of sector experts to help us draft and review our scripts.
Each script is also checked for use of language, to make sure the meaning is clear. Translations are done by people who speak the language as their mother-tongue, and where possible we get every translation checked before it is recorded by another person.
Finally, every lesson goes through a series of checks to make sure it works properly.
We always ask users to provide us with feedback, so that we can learn if there are any ways we can improve our lessons.
Why We Do it
In many countries around the world, millions of people do not have easy access to basic healthcare and information.
It is estimated by the World Health Organisation that globally, 15,000 children aged under 5 die every day as a result of preventable diseases.
Very often communities do not have access in their own language to the simple information and key facts that can give them better control over their health.
We seek to provide this information so that women, men and children, as well as entire communities, can be better protected from threats to their health and able to live fuller lives.
On a bigger scale, our lessons support the delivery of a large number of the United Nations sustainable development goals (SDGs), and so are ideal for organisations working to meet these goals, wherever they are.
While DVD technology is considered obsolete in some parts of the world, it is still an effective, consistent and highly cost-effective delivery method in the places that we are seeking to reach, enabling large groups of people to watch lessons and learn together.
Globally, less than half the world’s population has regular internet access. In Africa and Asia in particular, the proportion is far lower, and while smartphone use is growing, data is costly.
We know that online delivery of our lessons will be really important in the future, but for now it is essential to keep the “offline” option, as that is what our users want and need.
Who We Work With
Our lessons are widely used by health authorities, community groups, street children’s societies, health clinics, faith groups, schools and individuals.
Our DVDs have been sent to over 60 countries and 380 organisations.
All that is needed are our DVDs and access to a machine to play them on. The DVDs are easy to use and can be viewed on portable DVD players, on most computers or via a projector and screen. For those with an internet connection, many lessons are available online and can be played through an internet browser on a suitable computer or phone.
Sometimes, organisations ask for a version of the lesson that can be shown on a big screen without any interaction, for example in a waiting room. We do provide “non-interactive” versions of many of our DVDs so please contact us if you’d like to know more. However, we always advise to use the interactive lesson if possible as it makes it much easier to learn.
Between 2012 and 2019 we sent over 150,000 DVD lessons to 86 Countries
We have over 1500 registered users in 116 countries who have watched our lessons online.
In order to test the efficacy of our interactive DVDs, field research was performed in six countries and in eleven languages; Acholi, Kiswahili, Chichewa, Luganda, Runyankole, Mandarin, Xhosa, Zulu, Afrikaans, Hindi and Marathi.
A total of 3,546 questionnaires were completed during field research and subsequently analyzed. Narrative reports prepared by Geneva Global regional representatives showed that the DVDs were quite easy to use and enjoyable to learn from.
Public Awareness Campaign: Burundi
Report on 6 month public awareness campaign run by the Association pour la Solidarité et l‘Assistance Socio-Sanitaire (ASASS) in Burundi. Project provided DVDs which were viewed by over 90,000 people.
Educational intervention to reduce disease related to sub-optimal basic hygiene in Rwanda
Isle of Man funded research project in Rwanda, which demonstrated that the lessons have a measurable impact on childhood diseases, and will save lives.
A 26% reduction in parasitic infections was recorded during the research.
3 Year Isle of Man project – funding report