Group of community health workers with the Boost app

What is Boost?

Boost is a digital job aide for community health workers and peer educators. It is a mobile-first set of communication tools that enhances their knowledge, skills, and confidence to share accurate and actionable HIV, SRH (Sexual and Reproductive Health), and other primary health information with their communities.

Boost was co-created with over 100 community health workers in Southern Africa to support their specific knowledge needs and ways of working.

How can you access Boost?

Website.png

Web app

Access all the Boost content online at boost.avert.org

google.png

Google Play Store

Download the Android native app to use offline

kai-os 2.png

KaiOS

Go to the KaiOS store to download Boost for feature phones

facebook.png

Facebook

Join the Boost Facebook group to discuss ideas with other community health workers

Why Boost?

Millions of individuals and community health workers, in many of the places most affected by HIV, do not have up-to-date knowledge to support their own and their communities’ sexual health.

In sub-Saharan Africa, the impact of HIV and resource limitations mean community health workers play a particularly vital role in the health system and are often the primary source of health information for many.

To play an effective role, they need clear, accessible, and accurate information so they can provide high quality care to their communities. But often community health workers rely on paper-based resources which are difficult to keep up-to-date, or in-person training which varies in terms of regularity and quality.

The app has made it easy for peer educators to share correct information with their clients.

Zvandiri

Boost as a digital job-aide

With access to mobile phones and the internet growing in sub-Saharan Africa, Boost provides a digital alternative specifically developed and tailored to the needs of community health workers and the sub-Saharan African context.

Boost is a quick and convenient way for community health workers to stay up to date and have the information they need to hand throughout the day.

Purpose built for community health workers

Boost was designed and developed in collaboration with more than 100 community health workers from Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The Boost brand provides easy, up-to-date, visual, and interactive materials on HIV, sexual health, female genital schistosomiasis (FGS), COVID-19, mental health and other primary health information, available across a range of platforms. It supports community health workers’ ongoing learning and equips them with fun, interactive tools that they can use and share with their clients and peers.

Boost is:

  • Data light via the web app
  • Free to download for offline use via the Android native app
  • Available to individuals and organisations
  • Regularly updated with the latest information
  • Now available in Shona and Ndebele

What I love most about Boost is that it is simple but very educating and it will help me so much in my field.

Loveness

Community health worker in Zambia

How is Boost making a difference?

As of November 2023, Boost had been used by over 100,000 users across sub-Saharan Africa to support their own learning and client interactions.

Boost has been used by self-motivated individual community health workers and peer educators, as well as through organisational adoption of Boost as a programme tool.

Through a partnership with OPHID implementing Boost in Zimbabwe, we conducted a survey in 2021 among 485 of their community health workers (CHWs) who have used Boost. The survey showed:

  • 96% of Boost users increased their confidence and improved communication with the clients they support by using the app.
  • 100% of CHW supervisors reported that using Boost increases CHWs’ quality of service and they would encourage them to continue using it.
  • Community health workers saw the value of Boost for HIV knowledge checks and refreshers, accessing new and updated information on HIV and other health topics.
  • Boost increased personal knowledge on recent HIV-related evidence such as PrEP and Dolutegravir, as well as linked programme areas such as cervical cancer, mental health and COVID-19.

These findings highlight the importance of innovative partnerships between HIV programme implementers like OPHID and digital communications developers like Avert to reduce the digital divide and increase equitable access to accurate and engaging health information for community health workers.

Trusted by community health workers

Person on a mobile phone
Boost users
100,000+
Arrow pointing up
had increased confidence
96%
Download icon
downloads on KaiOS
7,000

Our scale strategy

Boost is a cost effective, scalable and adaptable product that can help address the knowledge needs of community health workers, peer educators and other outreach workers across sub-Saharan Africa. Building on our learnings from piloting, partnership and online engagement since 2020, we have established clear routes to scale Boost and ensure it reaches the maximum number of people – improving their knowledge, skills, and confidence.

Find out more about Boost

Boost-find out more (3).png

Our theory of change

Boost-find out more (1).png

The Boost scale roadmap

Boost-find out more (4).png

Our partnership model in action

Boost-find out more (2).png

Preparing Boost for scale

Get in touch with us

Do you work with community health workers who would benefit from Boost? If so, we’re eager to work with you. Get in touch with us to find out more.