Despite dazzling advances in medical technology, thousands of people die every year from preventable causes because they do not have access to medical care. Many of these people live in rural areas or are trapped in cycles of poverty. We believe everyone has the right to a healthy life, no matter who they are. We write and distribute health resources to support effective primary health care in under-served and under-resourced areas so that people are able to take control of their health and of their lives. Issues of health are closely linked with other social issues, and so improving health also means improving the environment, women's rights, access to education, community development, and poverty eradication. Because of the interconnectedness of these issues, supporting grassroots health movements--like the ones that Hesperian supports--creates improvement in many areas of people's lives.
For over thirty years, Hesperian has been writing and distributing resources that have meant survival for many people in poor and under-resourced communities. Hesperian's simply written, thoroughly illustrated books do not sit on shelves, but become actively used in communities, even by those without medical training. In the digital age, however, there are ways to reach people beyond books. Given the growing availability of mobile phones in rural areas, we believe that they can be used as tools to get lifesaving health information to those who need it. With the right information at the right time, community members are empowered to act to protect the health of themselves, their families, and their communities.
Hesperian has a team of writers, artists, and editors who create our health resources in cooperation with grassroots organizations and translation partners worldwide. For our mobile health project, we are lucky to have Matt Litwin and Divya Ramachandran join us and share their design, coding, and public health experience. Our partner organization, UnaMesa, is represented by Greg Wolf and Saq Imtiaz, who are dedicated to using tools and technology to address social issues.