Ruwan Dare


PMC produced Ruwan Dare (“Midnight Rain”) in Nigeria. This 208-episode radio show aired July 31, 2007 through July 18, 2009 in four northern states in Hausa, the most widely spoken and understood language in that area. It was also rebroadcast from July 2009 through November 2010.

Ruwan Dare aired in 15-minute episodes in northern Nigeria in the states of Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, and Sokoto. PMC’s survey indicated that the program had reached more than 12 million people. It aired on four radio stations (Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria [FRCN] Kaduna [Supreme 96.1]; Federal radio Corporation of Nigeria [FRCN] Katsina [Companion FM 104.5 FM], Rima Radio [Sokoto 101.5 FM], and Freedom Radio [Kano 99.5 FM]) two times per week from July 2007 through July 2009 and was rebroadcast from July 2009 through November 2010. In addition to the radio show, PMC used its whole society strategy in creating a radio talk show aimed at engaging listeners in Kano. The radio talkshow allowed people to phone in and talk about the issues addressed in Ruwan Dare.

As with all PMC radio shows, Ruwan Dare was created using PMC’s radio show methodology.

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Making a Difference

Like its predecessor Gugar Goge, Ruwan Dare proved to be a remarkably popular series with 72.4 percent of the population in the broadcast area listening. It reached an estimated 12.3 million loyal listeners in northern Nigeria saying they listened to the program one or more times a week. It catalyzed 1.1 million new family planning users with 60 percent of listeners agreeing that Ruwan Dare was both “entertaining and educational.”

The cost per listener was calculated to be $0.08 US cents, and the cost per behavior change (new adopter of family planning) was only $0.30 US cents. This level of cost-effective impact proves the efficiency of such an extensive communication campaign designed to promote long-term behavior changes.

Family Planning

• At baseline survey, the mean desired number of children for all respondents was 7.43 (females 7.71, males 7.03), which decreased significantly to 5.93 by the endline survey, most notably among females (females 5.39, males 6.96).
• The likelihood of respondents saying they did not want to have another child was 5.7 times greater at endline compared to baseline.
• Listeners were 2.4 times as likely as non-listeners to say they “currently use something to delay or avoid pregnancy.”
• The likelihood of respondents saying they had talked with their spouse or partner “once or twice” or “more often” about family planning in the last three months was 4.5 times greater at endline compared to baseline. (For males there was a notable relative increase of 48% from baseline to endline and for females there was a sharp relative increase of 172% from baseline to endline.)
• Listeners were more 1.9 times more likely than non-listeners to say they “discussed the practice of family planning with family, friends, or neighbors” in the past three months.
• Listeners were 2.6 times more likely than non-listeners to think that “couples should space children 2.5 to 3 years apart.”
• Listeners were 1.7 times more likely than non-listeners to say “yes” when asked if “couples should share responsibility for making decisions about family size.”
• Listeners were nearly two times as likely as non-listeners to think that “people should plan how many children they have.”



• Respondents who were not married or in a union were asked if they would “ever use contraceptives if married;” the likelihood of answering “yes” was 1.9 times greater at endline compared to baseline.
• Listeners were 1.6 times as likely as non-listeners to think that “children 12-14 should be taught about using condoms to avoid AIDS.”


Seeking Health Services

PMC established 11 clinic research sites in the four states and conducted four rounds of client exit interviews. The results showed new clients reporting seeking services because of listening to Ruwan Dare.

• Round 1 monitoring ( October 2007 – December 2007): 55% motivated by Ruwan Dare
• Round 2 monitoring (January 2008 – April 2008): 66% motivated by Ruwan Dare
• Round 3 monitoring (May 2008 – July 2008): 64% motivated by Ruwan Dare

And, for two specific issues:

• 33% of family planning/reproductive health clients motivated by Ruwan Dare
• 54% of fistula clients motivated by Ruwan Dare


The likelihood of respondents saying they had talked with their spouse or partner “once or twice” or “more often” about family planning in the last three months was 4.5 times greater at endline compared to baseline (up 48% for men and 172% for women).

(PMC Endline Survey)


Listeners were 1.7 times more likely than non-listeners to say “yes” when asked if “couples should share responsibility for making decisions about family size.”

(PMC Endline Survey)


PMC's fourth round of clinic monitoring in 11 clinics in four Nigerian states revealed that 67% of those seeking services reported being motivated by Ruwan Dare.

(PMC Clinic Monitoring)

Project Information

Title: Ruwan Dare (“Midnight Rain”)
Format: Radio Show
Location: Northern Nigeria (Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, and Sokoto States)
Language: Hausa
Duration: July 31st, 2007-July 18th, 2009; Rebroadcast July 2009-November 2010

PMC Country Administrative Team:
Country Representative: Tony Asanganeng (until April 8th, 2009 when he sadly passed away) Ephraim Victor Okon (after April 2009)
Special Assistant to the Country Representative: Ephraim Victor Okon (until April 2009)
Program Manager: Bello Adetokumbo (until 2008), Wale Awolowo (after 2008)
Assistant Office Manager: Joan Jeremiah
Driver: Abass Olayiwola

PMC Country Creative Team:
Producer: Aliu Shehu Yakassai
(Contracted out to Kwuality, Kano state) Writers: Balarabe Ramat, Aisha Bello, Aisha, Tijanni Amed

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Bawa’s Story

Bawa and his wife have three daughters and live together happily. But when Bawa goes to visit his mother, she relentlessly chides him for not having a son. Nevertheless, Bawa moves in with her, and she quarrels with everyone. Eventually, Bawa agrees to marry a second wife, but that union produces another baby girl. As Bawa’s mother starts going blind, one of Bawa’s daughters is tasked with supervising her in town. She saves her grandmother from being hit by a car, but her grandmother blames her for the near miss and insists on hiring a boy to lead her. The boy abandons the old woman when he sees his friends. As the woman steps blindly into traffic, her granddaughter notices and saves her grandmother’s life once again. The relieved driver turns out to be a rich senator, who rewards her with an academic scholarship. Bawa realizes the value of his wives and daughters and regrets having taken a second wife.

Issues this storyline addresses:

Jummai’s Story

Jummai sees her friend Ummi succeeding as an actress, wearing western dresses, eating chocolate and ice cream, and spending money. They begin spending more time togeter, even when it becomes clear that Ummi’s success comes from sleeping with producers and directors. Jummai’s mother is concerned about Jummai’s changing behavior, especially when she has to bail Jummai out of jail for doing drugs with Ummi and a director. Jummai stays away from Ummi for a while, but is eventually convinced to go out for drinks. Jummai, Ummi, and the director get very drunk and it is only the arrival of the director’s wife that saves the girls from a risky situation. At this, Jummai decides to change her behavior. She feels lucky to have done so as she sees Ummi lose her looks along with her ability to support herself and maintain an acting career.

Issues this storyline addresses:

Tslaha’s Story

Tslaha’s friend, Tanko, is marrying off his 9-year-old daughter for a significant dowry. Tanko convinces Tslaha to do the same, as their 9-year-old daughters are best friends. On the day of the weddings, the two girls are nowhere to be found –the girls have run away to escape their fate. Eventually, the girls are recovered and the weddings are rescheduled. Soon, Tslaha’s daughter has again vanished. Tslaha doesn’t know that she is living at her Uncle’s and is frequently visited by her grandmother. Tanko’s daughter is married and becomes pregnant long before her body is ready. The baby dies and her body is so damaged that she can never have children. The man sends her back to her father, saying that he sold him “damaged goods.” Tanko’s daughter cannot overcome her anger towards her father. Tslaha, heartbroken at the loss of his own daughter, realizes the terrible nature of child marriage. His daughter returns, and he sends her back to school. Her friend also comes to live with them and the girls finish their education together.

Issues this storyline addresses:

Azumi’s Story

Azumi and her husband, Lawai, love each other very much. Azumi is pregnant with their second child, but their first child is only four months old. Because of the close spacing of the pregnancies, Azumi suffers and the health worker tells them that if they don’t give Azumi’s body time to recover between pregnancies, she will die. They try to space their children, but Lawai is still nervous about Azumi. He decides to marry another woman so that Azumi will have time to rest. The second wife uses an herbalist to help her get pregnant, as her jealousy makes her want as many children as possible with Lawai. Azumi hears her parents’ disapproval of her use of contraception and convinces Lawai to allow her to have another baby, but she almost dies during the pregnancy. His second wife makes it look like Azumi is trying to put herbalist charms into his food. He throws Azumi out, but later realizes his mistake. Azumi returns to Lawai’s home. His second wife is pregnant again, but since discovering the truth, Lawai will not eat the second wife’s food or sleep in her bed. When his second wife dies during childbirth, Azumi lives with Lawai and cares for all the children as if they were her own. They use family planning to protect Azumi’s life.

This project funded by

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