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Vitamin A can prevent eye sight loss and we have to reach people’s ears to let them know about vitamin A and other micronutrients. World Radio Day is celebrated on February 13 every year and the Micronutrient Initiative knows how important radio is to getting nutrition messages out to families and communities.

Radio is one of the best ways to reach people with important information as at least 75 percent of households worldwide have radios and there an estimated 44,000 radio stations worldwide.

MI and its partners often use radio as a way to encourage families to access nutrition-based services in their communities and let families know what, when and where lifesaving and preventative services are available. Successful radio campaigns in countries such as Ethiopia, Kenya and Senegal have helped increase the number of people we can reach with life-saving and life-enhancing nutrition programs.

In Ethiopia, a radio campaign about the importance of vitamin A convinced Abyot Abebe to talk to her local Health Extension Worker about having her younger son dosed with vitamin A.

In Kenya, a lively discussion between neighbours helps a woman understand the benefits of taking iron and folic acid supplementation during pregnancy, for both her health and the health of her baby. Listen to the Swahili version of the IFAS radio campaign.

Diarrhoea is one of the leading causes of child deaths in Senegal. Even if children survive, it weakens their ability to play and learn. Since diarrhoea is so common in children, many parents don’t seek treatment, especially not in the first few days. Using zinc, along with oral rehydration salts, to treat diarrhoea can not only help kids get better faster, it can even save their lives. A radio spot that airs in seven languages as part of the country’s Zinc Alliance for Child Health motivates families to seek treatment for diarrhoea and assures them that zinc and ORS is effective and worth the visit to the health center.

Today we celebrate World Radio Day and celebrate the role radio plays in spreading the message of good nutrition!