Location Child survival, Nutrition

Tunza Afya


The Tanzanian government’s National Plan for Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health & Nutrition or, One Plan III, seeks to reduce maternal, child, and neonatal mortality by 2025.

DMI has drawn on the Tanzanian Ministry of Health’s (MOH) priorities for maternal and child health and drawn on evidence from our Burkina Faso child survival randomised controlled trial (RCT) to design a high-impact, national-level child survival and maternal mortality campaign focusing on malaria, pneumonia, diarrhoea, and antenatal care.

Tunza Afya, meaning to ‘take care of health’, will empower mothers to be agents of their own, and their children’s health, promote changes to social norms related to health treatment-seeking and minimise preventable deaths of children under five in Tanzania.




Child survival and maternal health – Encouraging parents to seek treatment for children with symptoms of malaria, pneumonia or diarrhoea. Promoting antenatal care and health facility deliveries.
Nutrition – demonstrating infant and young child feeding practices, and exclusive breastfeeding.


32 x 1-minute radio spots from previous DMI projects, Linda Afya and ASTUTE

72 x new 1-minute radio spots

6 – 10 x audio-visual spots


This campaign will run nationally from May 2022 until April 2025.

Estimated reach


Project at a glance

1 minute radio spots
months of broadcasting
radio stations

Our Approach


Child and maternal health

Maternal deaths represent 18% of all deaths of women aged 15-49 in Tanzania. Across the country, 50% of births occur at home, and only 46% of pregnant women are assisted during childbirth by a doctor, clinical officer, nurse, midwife, or maternal and child health aide. Meanwhile, largely preventable, and treatable diseases such as malaria, pneumonia and diarrhoea cause the death of 270 Tanzanian children under 5 years of age every day.

DMI’s previous child survival project in Tanzania, Imarisha Afya (‘promote health’) piloted a version of this campaign in Tanzania’s Lake Zone region, which has the highest child mortality rate in the country. The evaluation for this project found that broadcasting at saturation levels had been successful in getting crucial health messages to the intended audience and that the campaign had helped change gendered norms and behaviours. For the national scale up, we will build on the successes and lessons of this campaign, including conducting further analysis of all child and maternal health data to identify regional and seasonal variation which will inform more fine-tuned, targeted messaging.


Encouraging behaviour change

The campaign will message on treatment seeking for malaria, pneumonia and diarrhoea, use of insecticide-treated bed-nets, attending more than four antenatal care appointments, delivery at health centre, blood donations, infant and young child feeding (IYCF) practices and exclusive breastfeeding. We will draw on findings from Imarisha Afya to produce a refined messaging strategy for the campaign and ensure these messages are aligned with the priorities outlined in the MOH action plan. We will fortify our relationship with the MOH by engaging them in the design and approval of the campaign messaging strategy, creative outputs and evaluation. In tandem, we will also host regular workshops with regional Health Promotion Coordinators to enhance district-level capacity of social and behaviour change communication (SBCC).


Our campaigns across Tanzania, spanning more than half a decade, have successfully improved outcomes in child survival, nutrition and ECD. Through this, we have built a repository of highly effective radio and television spots on these topics. We selected 32 relevant radio spots from previous DMI campaigns, which can be used for this project. We plan to complement these with an additional 24 radio spots in the first year. We will also produce 2-4 audio-visual (AV) spots, engaging the MOH in production activities.

We will broadcast radio spots on Radio Free Africa, the national broadcaster, and 37 regional radio stations. Broadcasting will be for at least 33 months, from September 2022 – April 2025. In line with DMI’s Saturation+ methodology, spots will be broadcast 8-10 times per day and AV spots on television for a minimum of 4 months on 1-2 national stations. DMI hopes to partner with community health workers to distribute content at community level in years two and three of the campaign.

Project impact

DMI plans to conduct a process evaluation to assess:

  • The extent to which the campaign’s fidelity, dose and reach was successfully replicated from Burkina Faso to Tanzania,
  • How a different cultural context impacted the design of the campaign, and
  • Whether DMI’s Theory of Change ‘pathway to impact’ assumptions were correct.

This section will be updated when more information is available.

Partners & Funders

We are grateful to Cartier Philanthropy, a family foundation, and several private donors, primarily from the Effective Altruism Community, for supporting this project.