HC3’s First Year Gets Underway

HC3 LogoWelcome to the Health Communication Capacity Collaborative (HC3). We are just getting off the ground but plan during the next five years to make a real difference in the health and well-being of individuals across the globe. HC3 is based on the idea that empowered communities can improve their own health if local organizations can design and implement their own social and behavior change communication (SBCC) programs.

HC3 partners know that if properly designed and implemented, SBCC programs can save lives and improve the overall health of communities and the people that live in them. Why? Because we understand that health is created through the interplay of biology and society. These social aspects of health include powerful influences such as beliefs, attitudes, environment, norms and cultural practices. (In the scientific literature they are referred to as “societal determinants” and they can be as important as biology and genetics in shaping our health outcomes.)

SBCC programs use one of the most powerful and fundamental human interaction – communication – to positively influence these social dimensions of health and well-being. In well-designed SBCC programs, our use of communication goes beyond the delivery of a simple message or slogan to encompass all the ways in which people, individually and collectively, convey meaning.

SBCC programs balance the use of advocacy activities, mass media, community mobilization, outreach events, performing arts, interpersonal communication, information and communication technologies, social media and new media to model, explore and explain behaviors. In our first year, HC3 partners will be collecting guidelines for and examples of these tools and then making them widely available and easy to access in Year 2.

We are also working this year with UNICEF and USAID to gather evidence supporting the role SBCC can play in child survival efforts. And on the horizon, we plan to build a virtual community for sharing and exchanging health communication knowledge, expertise and resources.

We recognize that the richness of ideas and experiences in SBCC exists in offices, departments, teams and communities around the globe.  We want to make sure that we are using our expertise – communication – to support collaboration, growth and exchange throughout all our communities

Please check back often for more updates and thank you for your interest in HC3.

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