A 3-day step-down training has been organized by ARHR to introduce its partners and Alliance members to Co-Impact’s systems change approach. The training was pertinent following ARHR’s commencement of an initiative to scale up advocacy and efforts to contribute significantly to improving health outcomes for women and girls through a systems change approach, with funding support from Co-Impact’s Gender Fund.
The training has kickstarted a process to forge a common understanding of key concepts and develop a shared vision for Primary Health Care (PHC) systems change among Alliance members and partners. It provided a platform for ARHR, Alliance Members, and partners to delve deeper into the root causes of the failings of the current PHC system and address why the needs of women and girls were not adequately met despite years of advocacy and efforts for improved health outcomes for women and girls. Gaps were looked at from systems, gender and intersectionality, and political economy perspectives, and a foundation was laid to provide the basis for modelling a more responsive future PHC system.
A direction on identifying, strengthening, and mobilizing critical organizational and institutional capacities in support of creating just, inclusive, and gender-sensitive PHC systems were developed through the training.
The training took the form of PowerPoint presentations, break-out sessions, and break-out session reports presentations. Day one focused on systems change and what it meant; day two dealt with systems change strategies, gender and intersectionality, and women’s leadership; and day three explored the concepts of voice, power, agency, and building winning coalitions for systems change.
A key outcome of the training was the mutual understanding to move away from the usual project implementation approach to promoting women’s and girls’ health and shift toward a systems change approach. The understanding was based on the realization that when systems are changed to be responsive to the needs of women and girls, their health outcomes will be sustainably improved.
The training had about twenty-five participants from various organizations including Global Action for Women Empowerment (GLOWA), Click Gold Association, Volta Educational Renaissance Foundation (VEREF), Send Ghana, Center for Community Studies, Action and Development (CENCOSAD), Songtaba, Youth Alive, Progressive Youth Organization (PEYORG), Young and Lonely Foundation, Curious Minds Ghana.
Facilitation of the meeting was done by deep-rooted experts in the areas of systems change, gender and intersectionality, building winning coalitions, and PHC who included Dr. Esther Ofei-Aboagye, Madam Vicky T. Okine, Madam Taaka Awori, Mr. Mumuni Mohammed and Mr. Siapha Kamara.