Karachi (Muhammad Yasir) A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the Sindh Lady Health Worker Program (LHW) and Sukh Initiative with a strategic focus on supporting the Sindh LHW Program.
The Sukh Initiative is Pakistan’s first urban family planning project launched in November 2013 with assistance from The Aman Foundation, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and The David and Lucile Packard Foundation. The project goal is to increase prevalence of modern contraceptives by 15 percentage points, from the baseline, in selected one million, underserved peri-urban population of Karachi, Sindh. The project has successfully completed its 5 years of implementation and have demonstrated remarkable results in selected areas of Korangi; Landhi; Bin Qasim; and Malir.
Under this MoU, Sukh Initiative will provide support for capacity development and joint monitoring visits to the Sindh LHW program. Prior to this agreement, Sukh Initiative was working with the Sindh LHW program since 2016 with an objective to increase awareness and promote positive family planning and reproductive health behaviors by reorienting 200 LHWs on family planning services, reviving the support group meeting methodology focusing family planning and referrals and reinforcing joint monitoring mechanism. In addition to this, Life Skill Based Education was also introduced in catchment of LHW Initiative. It is important to note that the joint monitoring component have overall strengthened the system and led to collective ownership and performance of LHWs.
On this occasion, Dr. Azra Pechuho – Minister of Health and Population Welfare Department of Sindh, applauded the management of Sukh Initiative and Aman Health Care Services for their innovative approaches and commitment to strengthening FP services in Pakistan. She said: “I am delighted to see a systematic and focused collaboration of Health Department with a family planning project. Sukh is indeed another step for women empowerment and improving quality of life of the underserved. Sukh’s model will serve as a guide line to strengthen family project in Sindh.”
Dr. Ghulam Hussain Shaikh, Program Director, Sindh LHW Program shared that “It is encouraging to see such remarkable projects in Pakistan. Sukh’s support has indeed added value to the Lady Health Program. Sindh LHW program is committed to improve health across Sindh and will continue to cultivate community participation through enhanced awareness, attitude change, and mobilisation.”
Dr. Pir Ghulam Hussain, Senior Monitoring Officer acknowledged support provided by Sukh Initiative and said, “We are glad to share the success of our collaboration with Sukh Initiative including training of 200 LHWs from Bin Qasim Landhi and Malir in the First Dose of injection. Extension in this alliance is appreciated and we hope to witness long term positive changes of this effort.”
While signing the MoU, Shazina Masud, CEO – Aman Health Care Services appreciated this collaboration and shared that “Sukh Initiative promotes Family Planning and wellbeing in selected communities in Karachi. Through our dedication and innovate approaches we have demonstrated a successful model which is both scalable and sustainable. This project is yet another value addition to women empowerment. Access to and provision of quality health care services is the key that can transform the population issues. We appreciate the dedication of LHW program and are hopeful that the LHW program will collaborate with other stakeholders and continue to progress to achieve FP2020 goals in Pakistan.”
Dr. Haris Ahmed, Head of Sukh Initiative appreciated the support of Health Department, and Government of Sindh. He applauded the momentous decision to allow LHWs to provide the first dose of family planning injection after training and supervision. This is a concrete contribution to FP2020 goals. He further commented, “I am honored to lead this unique project which actively engages and connects demand generation, service delivery, youth engagement, system strengthening and sustainability. With a focus on peri-urban areas in Karachi, it is essential to engage communities by acknowledging their culture, providing access and holding their hands to progress to the next level of well-being. The LHWs working under Sukh have contributed significantly to this this cause. I am grateful to the Sindh Lady Health Worker Program and other stakeholders for their commitment to strengthen family planning in Sindh and wish them more progress in the future.”
Ehsanullah, Manager –LHW, Sukh Initiative shared that “ Sukh Initiative have strengthened the LHW program by engaging their senior management, building capacity and introducing Family Life Skills Education along with joint monitoring field visits for system improvement. We are delighted to share that the youth in target areas is now better aware about health and puberty issues and can make better decisions and informed choices. We wish to continue to support the LHW program to create a long term meaningful impact in Sindh.”