Thoughts from the Last Mile Welcome to the VillageReach Blog
12.20 2018

A Success Story

Kelliter Chizinga conducting her pharmacy practicum training. Photo Credit: Hope Ngwira

Pharmaceutical management is something that Kelliter Chizinga had always wanted to study and pursue as a career.  In November 2016, Chizinga’s passion for being of service to the community motivated her to enroll at the Malawi College of Health Sciences in Lilongwe in a two-year pharmacy assistant certificate program that aimed to train and deploy 650 pharmacy assistants across Malawi by 2020.

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11.28 2018

A Platform for Youth

Transforming Chipatala cha pa Foni (CCPF)health center by phone – into a youth-friendly health service requires support from unexpected places. Since 2011, this service has provided health information to communities around Malawi. Through the DREAMS Innovation Fund, CCPF has expanded to provide a free, confidential option for young women and men to learn more about sexual and reproductive health topics.

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11.15 2018

DREAMS Innovation Challenge | Success Story

Adolescent adviser Tinnah Onions at the CCPF Hotline.

Connecting adolescents with resources is nothing new for Tinnah Onions—it is Tinnah’s first time, however, linking adolescents to sexual and reproductive health information via Chipatala cha pa Foni (CCPF), or Health Center by Phone, a toll-free mobile health hotline in Malawi.

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09.24 2018

DREAMS Innovation Challenge | Success Story

More than anything, Taurai Kamfosi loves to sing. Music has played an important part of her life since she was a small child and at 10 years old, she composed her first song. It became even more important to her when her parents could not afford her school fees, and she focused on pursuing a passion for music.

For Taurai, music is a powerful tool. Even from an early age, Taurai has dedicated her musical talents to empowering women. As a young girl, she performed in her community to encourage young girls to resist peer pressure, to value their education, and to make smart choices for themselves. She has seen firsthand the pressure many girls face from older men – and she knows how early pregnancies and teenage marriage can prevent women from pursuing their dreams.   

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08.10 2018

DREAMS Innovation Challenge  |  Success Story

Connecting adolescents with resources is nothing new for Tinnah Onions, but it is her first time linking them to sexual and reproductive health information via the toll-free Chipatala Cha Pa Foni (CCPF)— Health Center by Phone—hotline. CCPF hires health care workers to provide health information and referrals over the phone, providing a critical link to the health system, especially for remote and underserved communities.

Tinnah and her colleague Justin Mpalabwazi are some of the most recent additions to CCPF for Adolescents, an initiative of the DREAMS Innovation Challenge. As adolescent advisors, they promote the CCPF service to their peers, helping to meet the sexual and reproductive health information needs of adolescents in Malawi.

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06.19 2018

Benat Kalebe is a pharmacy technician at Ntchisi District Hospital, Malawi.

On any given day, you may find Benat Kalebe organizing his storeroom or dispensing medicines at the Ntchisi District Hospital. He may be working in the hospital’s different wards, providing support for the nurses and doctors while keeping a close eye on the stock levels of the medicines they use. But Benat is more than the hospital’s pharmacy technician. He is a conduit for life-saving medicines for 16 health facilities throughout Ntchisi District in Malawi.

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06.01 2018

Laiford at work in Mbang’ombe 1 Health Center drugstore

Mbang’ombe 1 Health Center is in the back yard of Lilongwe International Airport. In terms of access to quality health services however, the facility might as well be far from Lilongwe. At approximately 50 km from the Lilongwe District Health Office and Central Medical Stores, the facility serves a rural community. It has one clinician, four nurses, 11 Health Surveillance Assistants (HSAs) and several support staff who serve over 5,000 households, a total population of 24,762 people. The facility has never had pharmacy personnel.

Laiford Nandolo is one of the two HSAs that help manage the drugstore in the absence of a trained Pharmacy Assistant. Although Laiford has over 10 years of experience as a health worker, most of his drugstore clerk experience has been on the job without formal training, except a one-day training he received back in 2014.

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04.18 2018

ONSE is a maternal and child health systems strengthening program in Malawi aimed at reducing maternal, newborn and child mortality through a wide range of activities including improving access to better nutrition, family planning/reproductive health, malaria, and (WASH); improving the quality of these services through district level health system strengthening, and increasing demand for the services. The program incorporates a consortium of partners. VillageReach is responsible for supply chain strengthening activities from the district to the health centers to the village clinics. Key activities include rolling out the mobile health hotline CCPF nationwide with key mobilization activities in the 16 ONSE districts; expanding the use of pharmacy assistants as mentors to cluster facilities; providing oversight and capacity building for supply chain activities at the health centers; and improving health center and district’s ability to turn in timely and accurate commodity data reports.

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04.18 2018

Using human-centered design principles, VillageReach is working with partners to design, develop, and deploy an easy to use and interactive digital refrigerator maintenance and repair manual for cold chain technicians in Malawi.

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