CHW In Senegal

The theme of this year’s International Women’s Day is “Women in the Changing World of Work”. A topic that will resonate with many working on community health. Although women make up the majority of people working on health in many countries they are woefully under-represented in leadership positions meaning that our policy and practice is not shaped by their particular experiences and expertise.

Women and girls act as the foundation of most health systems – providing unpaid care to family members and neighbours with little recognition. Community Health Workers are also crucial to the health and wellbeing of many citizens, a role that in many contexts falls disproportionately on women. Yet often their contribution is unpaid and they labour as volunteers.

Community Health Workers – of all genders – can transform gendered roles and relations because of their unique position. They are community leaders whose advice and guidance is trusted by the people that they work for. They interact with people in their homes, tackling the social determinants of ill health. They deliver essential sexual and reproductive health services, which contribute to women’s well-being and enable them to succeed in other areas of their lives. Their ability to interact with government services through their supervisors allows them to collect, interpret, and communicate essential data for better decision making.

National governments and the international community are beginning to appreciate the actual and future potential contribution of Community Health Workers to health and development. To help decision makers develop policies and programmes with the potential to create deep and enduring gender transformation our half-day symposium on community health workers brings together an international panel of speakers to interact with their Kenyan counterparts.

Our aim is to capture lessons about how community health workers are supporting gender equity and what more we can do to support them in their efforts. The symposium will enable dialogue that furthers our shared efforts towards Sustainable Development Goal 5 and universal health coverage. The event will be structured around two question time panels – where a moderator will ask our experts a series of questions and the audience will be asked to raise their voices too. 

We welcome you to participate in this symposium which will take place on Friday March 10 2017, 8:00 – 13.00 at the Silver Springs Hotel, Nairobi. Please contact for more information.

Symposium Agenda

8:00 –
Arrival and registration REACHOUT Team

8:45 –

Welcome remarks, REACHOUT: “The Journey” Dr Lilian Otiso 
(LVCT Health, Kenya)
09:00 - 9:15 Opening remarks Dr Salim Hussein
(Head of CHDU)
09:15 – 09:30 Gender and Community Health Workers: The global context Prof Sally Theobald 
(Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, UK)
09:30 – 09.45  Gender and Community Health Workers: The Kenyan context Penina Ocholla
(Great Lakes University of Kisumu,Kenya)
9:45 – 10:15 Process, power and politics: setting priorities for community health and equity in the recently devolved Kenyan health system Dr Rosalind McCollum
(Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, UK) 
10:15 – 10:35 BREAK  
10:35 – 10:40  Screening of CHV Video: “Making the invisible visible”  
10:40 – 11:40 

Panel Session 1:

Furthering gender equity through community health. What do we know, and where should we go?

Dr Salim Hussein
(Head of CHDU)
Dr Mohsin Sidat
(Eduardo Mondlane University, Mozambique)
Dr Carol Ngunu
(Department of Health Services, Nairobi County)
Kingsley Rex Chikaphupha
(REACH Trust, Malawi)

Dr Maryse Kok
(KIT, The Netherlands)

11:40 – 11:45 Screening of CHV Video  
11:45 – 12:45

Panel Session 2:

The unique contribution of community health workers to sexual and reproductive health. Strengthening a strong foundation

Dr Rifat Mahfuza
(JPG School of Public Health, BRAC University, Bangladesh)
Dr Ralalicia Limato
(Eijkman Institute for Molecular Biology, Indonesia)
Robinson Karuga
(LVCT Health, Kenya)
Dr Daniel Datiko
(REACH Ethiopia, Ethiopia)
Dr Lynn Kanyuuru
(Maternal Child Survival Program, Kenya)
David Silu
(Department of Health, Kitui County)

Dr Lillian Otiso
(LVCT Health, Kenya)
12:45 – 13.00 Closing remarks Dr Miriam Taegtmeyer





























Photo courtesy of Ericsson

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