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Facts for Life – a comprehensive communication framework for behavior change and development in Mozambique

© UNICEF Mozambique/ G. Pirozzi

MAPUTO, Mozambique, 1 April 2011 – Each year, around 8 million children die before reaching their fifth birthday, and every single day, an estimated 22,000 children die from preventable causes. Many die during their first year of life. Countless more children live in precarious situations and face diminished futures.

The handbook, Facts for Life, provides vital messages and information for mothers, fathers, other family members and caregivers and communities to use in changing behaviours and practices that can save and protect the lives of children and help them grow and develop to their full potential. On the occasion of World Health Day (April 7), Facts for Life, will be launched by the Minister of Health, Dr. Alexandre Manguele, at an event on 6 April 2011, with representatives of the UN system in Mozambique also attending.

Though still in an early phase of development, growth of the information, communication and entertainment field in Mozambique has created an important enabling environment for communication for development (C4D) activities. The growing capacity of civil society, including organizations specializing in C4D, health promotion, HIV prevention and child rights advocacy, has made the planning and implementation of communication activities more coherent and has allowed for greater decentralization of such activities.

Facts for Life is well positioned to build on this greater capacity by providing a C4D communication framework that can be adopted, adapted and used by any organization. Eight different UN agencies have collaborated on the development and production of the publication, which was first printed in 1989. In this way, Facts for Life also represents an important step in the process of achieving greater coordination and coherence of C4D communications that originate within and are sponsored by the UN system.

The current version of Facts for Life builds on three previous editions, which have been helping families and communities around the world since it was first launched. Newborn Health has been added to the Safe Motherhood chapter, giving attention to child survival from the first stage of life. A new chapter, Child Protection, has been included, focusing attention on the actions needed to ensure children grow up in protective environments.

Facts for Life is a trusted resource that is written in easy-to-understand language. It has been translated into 215 languages, with over 15 million copies of the previous editions in circulation worldwide. Users are encouraged to be innovative in finding ways to extend the reach of the Facts for Life messages to help families and communities realize the rights of children and women everywhere.

For more information on Facts for Life, please see:

For more information, please contact:

Arild Drivdal, UNICEF Mozambique, tel. (+258) 21 481 100; email:

Gabriel Pereira, UNICEF Mozambique, tel. (+258) 21 481 100; email:



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