Zathu: Uniting boys and girls for a more equal Malawi

Born out of Malawian culture, Zathu uses the power of music and storytelling to close the gender gap and tackle challenging topics such as relationships, stereotypes, self-expression and sexual health.

Slide Something was sleeping within our children, but now it has awakened because of Zathu. Deputy Headmaster, Ezondweni Secondary School, Malawi Slide Zathu brings boys and girls closer, and allows us to ask questions without being judged. Theresa, Lilongwe Slide Zathu brings boys and girls closer, and allows us to ask questions without being judged. Ambassador Deborah Birx, the United States global AIDS co-ordinator

The sound of a new Malawi

Bringing together the best of local culture and creativity, Zathu is a unique youth brand that uses the power of music and storytelling to tackle challenging topics around growing up – from friendships between girls and boys, finding the confidence to express yourself, harmful stereotypes and sexual reproductive health. Zathu helps girls to be seen, to be heard, and to achieve.
By helping to close the gender divide, Zathu has the potential to deliver something much bigger than the sum of its parts. By improving the perceived value of girls – by girls themselves and those around her – we can have a knock-on impact on far wider health and poverty indicators. For example, by informing girls and giving them confidence, they will better understand why their wellbeing is important, seek help, and be more likely to visit a clinic.

What we make

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Music

Blending traditional Malawian influences with modern beats, three singles have been released, with a full album to come.

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Radio Show

Two weekly episodes feature music, real-life stories, an agony aunt and a drama about six friends in the Zathu Band.

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Events

Zathu brings the radio show to life with live performances, stories, advice, music and drama in schools, youth centres and public spaces.

Slide 2.6 million regularly consume Zathu in Malawi 2017 audience survey Slide 2017 audience survey of consumers agree that Zathu helps them feel more in control of decisions which affect their lives 91% Slide 2017 audience survey of consumers agree that Zathu has taught them that females should be treated equally to males 96%

Zathu awards & endorsements

Although still a relatively new brand, Zathu has been recognised for the strides it is already taking in tackling the structural and negative social drivers that reinforce gender inequality in Malawi.

Winner of ‘Best Breakthrough Creative’ in the Demand Creation Challenge awards 2018

Distinction in the ‘Gender Equality’ category of Shorty Social Good awards 2018

Shortlisted for an African Excellence Award in the ‘Multi Channel Communication’ category

Springster Partnerships

Breaking down negative attitudes and behaviours that prevent girls accessing life-saving vaccines

Increasing demand for health services by empowering girls

Putting empowering content in the hands of girls, globally

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