Johannesburg, South Africa
“Advancing community health is central to achieving sustainable development and universal primary healthcare. The foundations of community health within the context of primary health care are increasingly recognized as crucial components of national policies and strategies to accelerate progress in health. We need to further integrate community health approaches into national and local health policy and systems in order to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and the implementation of the new UN Global Strategy for Women's, Children's and Adolescents' Health”.
“In all societies there are many ideas about masculinity and femininity that are harmful, not just to girls and women, but also to boys and men, as well as people of other gender identities”.
UN Women Training Centre website on March 7 2017.
Overseas Development Institute (ODI)
"Post-disaster contexts are often characterised by the aggravation of discriminatory norms, social inequalities and gender-based violence, particularly against women and girls. Disasters cause suffering and damage but they also provide opportunities for those affected to transform the way they live, from assuming new responsibilities to voicing their rights and interests."
This working paper from the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) explores the impacts of disasters on power relations and gendered norms and discusses how resulting changes in social relations affect people's resilience. By highlighting knowledge gaps, the authors aim to better understand why and how resilience programming can integrate social dimensions of vulnerability, including the risk of violence, and foster more equal power relations.
This paper aims to answer the following questions:
<div class="field button"><a href="https://www.odi.org/sites/odi.org.uk/files/resource-documents/11113.pdf" target="_blank">Click here for the 22-page report in PDF format.</a></div>
ODI website, March 14 2017. Image caption/credit: "Tents provided by the Government of Japan serves as temporary shelter for families in Barangay Candahug, Palp, Leyte, Philippines, following Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) © Asian Development Bank 2013 CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
“Child rights advocates are optimistic of its transformative role in enhancing the voice of young people and instituting an empowering narrative for social change. However, it is constrained by conceptual and programmatic weaknesses which impair its effectiveness as a tool of meaningful participation and communication by children.”
<div class="field button"><a href="https://www.arcjournals.org/pdfs/ijmjmc/v2-i3/2.pdf" target="_blank">Click here to download this 10-page article in PDF format. </a></div>
Email received from Adebayo Fayoyin on March 11 2017, and International Journal of Media, Journalism and Mass Communications website on March 14 2017.
This handbook is a reference tool for anyone who works in public health or international development and wants to bring together a group of people to discuss ideas, address challenges, and share best practices. The handbook guides users through the process of holding a share fair and includes customisable planning tools and concrete examples.
K4Health website on March 20 2017.
"The Strategy operates through influential members and decision-makers in homes, the community, and on communication media platforms, establishing bridges of cultural relevance and emphasizing the reasons and benefits of behavior change."
"Guatemala SBCC Strategy for First 1,000 Days Targets Influencers Beyond Young Mothers", by Claire Slesinski, February 28 2017 - accessed on March 8 2017.
This toolkit is designed to inform the media about the importance of civic space, and how the media can play a more effective role in protecting it. It defines what civic space is, the threats and challenges it faces, and the pivotal work being done across the world to protect and promote civic space. Most importantly, it provides story ideas and angles designed to help media and journalists cover these issues better. It also provides resources and hyperlinks for further resources and reading.
<div class="field button"><a href="http://www.civicus.org/index.php/media-center/toolkits/2746-guide-to-reporting-civic-space" target="_blank">Click here to download the toolkit and complementary materials in English and Spanish.</a></div>
English and Spanish
CIVICUS website on March 22 2017.
"With an average of 7.6 children per woman, Niger has the highest fertility rate in the world and the highest rate of child marriage worldwide: 76.3 percent of women currently 20-24 years were married before age 18 and 28 percent before age 15."
<div class="field button"><a href="http://www.e2aproject.org/publications-tools/pdfs/university-leadership-for-change.pdf" target="_blank">Click here to download this 52-page report in PDF format.</a></div>
E2A website on March 6 2017.
"Progress continues to be made in the fight against hunger; yet, a large number of people still lack of food and are not adequately nourished. It is estimated that 795 million people in the world were undernourished (2014-2016 estimates), meaning they had insufficient calories in their diet to meet their needs."
<div class="field button"><a href="http://media.wix.com/ugd/a1d6d9_a2bd1d4779554eddb7d6c9dedd006333.pdf" target="_blank">Click here to download the English version of the report in PDF format. </a></div>
SUN Civil Society Network website on February 28 2017.
The Preventing Maternal Deaths in East and Southern Africa (PreMDESA) project has two objectives - to achieve universal access to sexual and reproductive health care services, and reduce maternal mortality in the region. In particular, it seeks to provide robust evidence to inform the successful design and implementation of sexual and reproductive health programmes - as well as support formative research in areas of innovation, demographics, and data. Launched in November 2015, the project uses a multifaceted approach that combines investment, evidence, policies, programmes, and advocacy.
Activities include the following (with those with relevance to media and communication elaborated on further below) :
- Provision of reproductive health commodities for 10 countries.
- Capacity building of health providers on new contraceptives in seven countries with critical skills gaps.
- Roll out of social media applications and platforms to provide interactive sexual and reproductive health (SRH) information to adolescents and young people.
- Establish a regional Innovation Accelerator and Knowledge Hub on SRH.
- Set up regional Centres of Excellence on population data.
- Conduct operational research and documentation to enhance the knowledge base on SRH and maternal health.
- Develop an evidence-based regional strategy to increase access and demand for SRH services for young people with disabilities.
- Promote high level consultations on harnessing the demographic dividend.
- Produce research on human resources and task shifting in the health sector.
- Conduct a feasibility study on regional supply chain management and pharmaceutical manufacturing plan.
- Develop and maintain a regional web-based Integrated Management Information Systems.
- Document and share the lessons learned.
Gathering evidence for efficient planning:
Under the PreMDESA umbrella, a series of research studies will produce solid evidence on sexual and reproductive health issues in East and Southern Africa. The evidence will inform innovative policy and design of family planning activities in the region and includes the use of the Total Market Approach (TMA). UNFPA is advancing previous work looking at how the public sector, commercial suppliers, and non-governmental organisations can work together to deliver wider reproductive health choices in the region. Whether contraceptives are sold at full market price, distributed for free or subsidised through social marketing, TMA ensures that no one is left behind. Research will seek to better understand the motivations and barriers to modern contraceptive use.
Supporting quality statistics for efficient planning:
Because reliable data is the backbone of sound policies, decision-making, and accountability, PreMDESA strongly supports the production and provision of quality data. Activities include improving national digital data collection and advancing the data revolution to harness the demographic dividend in the region. This is being done through capacity strengthening activities and the use of information and communication technologies (ICT) in data capture to improve cost-effectiveness, accuracy, and timeliness.
PreMDESA is supporting three regional Centres of Excellence (CoE) on population data to be hosted in the national statistics offices of Cape Verde, Senegal, and South Africa. The Centres will serve as virtual and physical knowledge hubs to connect research, expertise, policy and practice, while engaging in South-South partnerships. The Centres will foster efficiency within national statistical systems and build local capacity to find solutions, such as developing apps based on standard census questionnaires. Young statisticians and demographers will be nurtured through training, internships, mentoring, and coaching.
Addressing young people's needs through social media sites:
Tune Me, an interactive mobile health site for young people, is part of UNFPA’s Safeguard Young People (SYP) Programme operating in 8 southern African countries (see Related Summaries below). Launched in 2014, SYP aims to reach three million youths with sexuality education and services through social media, online platforms, events, music and a mix of communication channels. Through PreMDESA, Tune Me is expanding to Malawi, Botswana, Swaziland, Namibia, Lesotho, and Zimbabwe in association with local content partners. Besides Facebook - the region’s most efficient channel in terms of reach and cost effectiveness - Tune Me is also expanding its marketing on other digital platforms, such as Opera Mini, BMM, To Go, and Google. PreMDESA will also support the growth in range and volume of content, and a new feature will help youth find youth-friendly clinics by geo-location, including feedback mechanisms to track quality of care. To reach young people beyond social media, PreMDESA produced four pamphlets on youth-friendly services, human rights, HIV testing, and social media safety.
Innovation Accelerator programme:
To engage with young people, PreMDESA’s launched the Innovation Accelerator programme which provides young media entrepreneurs with mentorship, seed funding, training, and business skills to develop scalable and sustainable solutions to population and socio-economic challenges. Funded by DFID, ESA’s first Innovation Accelerator cycle kicked off in Kenya in June 2016. It was branded as the I.AM campaign and its challenge was to link young people with information and services on sexual and reproductive health. UNFPA partnered with Nailab, a technology-driven business incubator, with the support of Kenya’s National Council for Population and Development and Ministry of Health. Three boot camps attracted more than 1,500 youths, mostly university students, while social media reached 320,000 people. Among 90 proposals received, nine were selected to pitch to five judges, who chose four winners. Between August and November 2016, each winner received mentorship, business management training, and seed capital of KES 1,000,000 (USD 10,000) to refine the prototype and market strategy. At the end of the training, on ‘Demo Day’, the winners showcased their prototypes to a jury comprised of potential investors and implementers, such as ministries, who selected one or more solutions to be tested through a pilot. A second Innovation Accelerator programme was launched in Kigali, Rwanda in December 2016 (see video below), and Uganda and Tanzania are to follow.
Research into young people with disabilities:
Young people with disabilities face many barriers in accessing sexual and reproductive needs, information, and services. To mitigate this exclusion, UNFPA is developing a regional strategy for ESA that will expand both their access to and demand for sexual and reproductive health services. In order to inform the regional strategy, UNFPA will conduct research in 2017 which will concentrate on two countries in Southern Africa (Malawi and South Africa), and two in East Africa (Kenya and Uganda). The four case studies will identify best practices, lessons learned, and gaps in the provision of sexual and reproductive health services and commodities to young people with disabilities. The research will also illuminate the complexities, dynamism, and multidimensionality of the full range of disabilities in connection with sexual and reproductive health and rights.
Click here for more information on the project.
Maternal Health, Sexual and Reproductive Health
Rationale for the programme:
Impressive progress in maternal health has been achieved in East and Southern Africa (ESA), but the region still sees far too many deaths and ill health related to pregnancy and childbirth, and far too many people, especially the young, cannot access contraception when needed. The region has the world’s second worst rate of maternal mortality at 455 deaths per 100,000 live births; on average a woman has 4.4 children, and just over one third of married women aged 15-49 use modern contraception.
UNFPA and DFID in partnership with governments, institutions, and communities.
Email received from Adebayo Fayoyin, UNFPA ESARO on March 10 2017, UNFPA ESARO website and Preventing Maternal Deaths in East and Southern Africa (PreMDESA) report, January 2017 [PDF] on March 14 2017, and email received from Campbell Bright, UNPFA ESARO on March 16 2017.