ICT & Health Education: iTunes for Bioethics, MySpace for Darfur, Vietnam Radio for HIV
There are three examples this week of using various information and communication technologies (ICT) for global health issues that are worth highlighting. These examples use the:
- power of online social networks,
- organizing tools of iTunes, and the
- reach of radio programming
And if you want to check out an NGO that is helping develop and disseminate locally created and driven educational radio content, visit Equal Access.
1) Highschool students raise dollars for Darfur via MySpace (Link)
Two highschool students are attempting to raise $200k for Darfur by organizing fundraising events via MySpace and Facebook. More on the story at the epidemiology blog – Aetiology. Various non profit organizations and cause driven profiles have jumped onto MySpace and there is even the MySpace Impact Awards for people who have had a positive impact on culture. Each award comes with $10,000 and promotional ad space. This is a great way to reach people, however, I am wondering if (really when) there will be a saturation point at which social online networks such as MySpace (or blogs even) are so numerous that people become weighed down and desensitized to educational/cause advertising and fundraising efforts. This seems like a really nifty idea, the student website states – “There are over 27,000 high schools in the United States. If each school raised just $50, we could raise over one million dollars!” It is great to be around young folks because of their energy, creativity and optimism.
2) Voice of Vietnam radio for HIV education
– 104 soap opera episodes to reach a youth audience
– Broadcast to 64 cities and province
– $770k in funding
More info can be found here and also check out Equal Access.
3) New masters bioethcs course launches on iTunes (Link)
This kind of educational medium is largely restricted to those with enough money to take the course, but the use of iTunes does make this accessible anywhere. The design is slick, check it out at the BioEthics blog. “Working with Apple, we’ve designed a program with lots of interaction, live sessions, thousands of hours of supplementary video on all areas of bioethics, all brought down automatically to your iPod (included with the program – how cool is that – click here to take a look), including lectures and case discussion but also hundreds of the key television and even movie segments on bioethics that have been used in classes forever but not collected into one place.”