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Our foundations and approach

Group of young people smiling

The way we work is underpinned by our aim to develop and promote health information that is accurate, accessible, useful and actionable.

As an organisation committed to health literacy, we will:

  • improve access to health information
  • increase the ability of individuals to use, engage with and participate in our health content, to increase understanding and to increase its usefulness
  • raise awareness of the wider determinants of health among individuals, educators and practitioners to provide an understanding of the context of their choices.

All these elements are critical to our goal of empowering people through knowledge – to help them make decisions about their health, and to help health workers support them, in difficult and often hostile contexts.

We have endorsed and integrated the Principles for Digital Development – a set of living guidelines designed to help integrate best practices into technology-enabled programmes – into our work. We are also accredited as a trusted information creator under the PIF Tick scheme and signatories of the UK Patient Information Forum’s Health and Digital Literacy Charter signalling our ongoing aspiration to make it easier for people to navigate, understand, and use information and services to take care of their health.

We prioritise people-centred design principles, working with users to develop products that meet their needs

We engage, observe and co-create with our users throughout our projects so we understand their challenges and deliver products that meet their needs. We have clear evidence from our own work that co-creation results in content with a high level of engagement and impact – through its relevance, credibility and inclusivity. We also meet people where they already are online, supporting the reach of our content and maximising engagement. Our work with civil society organisations across southern Africa and Asia shapes our understanding of the contexts we work in and informs our work.

We use learning and evidence from health literacy, behaviour change and digital marketing research and practice to inform our content and approach

Our commitment to co-creation and people-centred design ensures our content is relevant and meets the user’s needs. In addition, understanding and learning from research and practice in health literacy, behaviour change and digital marketing improves the effectiveness of our content and digital approaches.

We work through partnerships, as the best way to create high quality, sustainable programmes

We partner with a range of organisations across government, academia, private sector and third sector in the geographies we work – including local and national NGOs, INGOs, technology and creative design agencies, research institutes and more. These partnerships play a critical role supporting the quality, effectiveness and sustainability of our work. They ensure our content products are based on need and can be widely adopted and integrated into existing programmes.

Where appropriate we also aim to build our partners’ understanding and use of digital, sharing our learning and experience to support national and locally led digital approaches.

We use our understanding of technology to prioritise inclusive digital approaches, and our knowledge of the context to create realistic solutions

We use data from our search optimisation work and product analytics to respond to technology changes, content trends and information priorities, ensuring our content products remain relevant and accessible.

Technology can act as a leveller, but it can also accentuate existing divides. We aim to design and develop content products that support inclusion and access, and that are appropriate for their context.

We monitor, evaluate and learn from our work

We strive to understand and learn from how our content, resources and platforms are being used, whether and how they are supporting intention, change and action, and how they could be improved to make more of a difference.

We will continue to improve how we monitor, evaluate and learn from our work – investing in our own MEL capacity to interrogate and use programme data to inform and adapt our projects and our priorities. We will also contribute to wider discussions across the sector to develop new ways to assess the value and impact of digital communications interventions.

Our approach will be guided by our Monitoring, Evaluation, Learning and Results Framework.

Photo credit: iStock/franckreporter. Images used on this site are for illustrative purposes only. They do not imply any health status or behaviour on the part of the people in the photo.

Last full review: 
28 May 2021
Next full review: 
28 May 2023
Last updated:
28 May 2021
Last full review:
28 May 2021
Next full review:
28 May 2023