Objectives To create an awareness among women and to update the knowledge of health personnel about neural tube defects (NTDs) and folate in order to reduce the incidence of NTD in Narlidere, Izmir. Methods In 2006, a regional campaign was organized in Narlidere, Izmir that aimed at informing women of child-bearing age on folic acid and prevention of NTD. Nearly 4400 women participated in the study. By means of questionnaires the level of knowledge before and after the intervention was evaluated. Results Before the campaign was carried out, 18% of women had heard of folic acid. Their level of knowledge increased after the campaign (p0.0001). Post-intervention scores of high school and university graduates and women with high or middle income, as well as those having a friend or kin with spina bifida were found to have significantly improved. Conclusions The pilot community-based training programme was very successful. Similar programmes, integrated within routine health care services, promoting the use of folic acid will be fostered in the whole country.