It’s 9 a.m. and 100 unread messages already await a response on the Úsala Bien Facebook fan page. It’s time for Tania to get to work, helping change the world one adolescent at a time.
Tania adjusts her computer screen and opens the first message. It’s from Laura, a 16-year-old who saw an Instagram video of her favorite radio host talking about the importance of avoiding unwanted pregnancies and tagging Úsala Bien. Laura has questions about birth control but is too embarrassed to ask anyone she knows.
Laura’s message is one of nearly 10,000 messages received over a three-month period alone. Based in El Salvador’s capital city, Tania is one of 13 peer “cyber-educators” working across five countries in Central America and the Caribbean. It’s an initiative under the Jóvenes 3.0 program, implemented by PSI affiliates the Pan American Social Marketing Organization (PASMO) and Society for Family Health/Dominican Republic. Launched in 2017, Jóvenes 3.0 uses digital channels and social media to increase youth access to reproductive health information and services in a region where sexual education is limited and teen pregnancy rates remain high.
The Úsala Bien page is part of a comprehensive strategy that integrates one-on-one cyber-education onto digital platforms to reach and serve young people on spaces they know and trust. Social media influencers engage users on the Úsala Bien page, which uses social listening insights to refine information delivery. This peer-to-peer strategy is bolstered by digital analytics, serving cyber-educators with real-time data and empowering the cyber-educators with evidence-based insights to quickly adapt outreach in response to target consumer engagement.
In February 2018, Jóvenes 3.0 launched a digital campaign that reached over 24 million young people online. More than 8,500 one-on-one online interventions were led by cyber-educators like Tania who help young people make informed decisions and take control over their sexual and reproductive health.
—With Contribution from Andrea Novella and Alejandra Cabrera,Pan American Social Marketing Organization (PASMO)
Banner photo: (c) PSI/David Olson, Illustration by Cassie Kussy