Liberia

Africare launches $10 million health program in Liberia

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News and Press Release
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Washington, D.C. (Jan. 28, 2003) - Africare has formed a Consortium along with the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs (JHU/CCP) and the Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM) to launch an Improved Community Health Program in Liberia. The Consortium has received initial funding from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to implement this Program.
The Program will help improve the availability, quality, and reach of primary health care and family planning services. Principal focus will be at the community level, with timely referral for strengthened services at secondary and tertiary facilities. The Consortium will also work with civil society partners and the public health sector to develop and demonstrate approaches of potential value to health policy planners, and help to increase the availability of resources for health sector development in Liberia.

The new Program builds upon the work of Africare's current Community Health Initiative project being implemented through five nongovernmental organization (NGO) partners in association with 34 clinics, reaching over 300 communities in Liberia. Under the new Program, clinics will be added to the network, clinic staff will be provided refresher training in primary health care, essential equipment and drugs will be supplied, and community health outreach will be strengthened. This includes the training of community-based health workers, who will deliver basic services including assistance with home-based births and distribution of basic medicines such as anti-malarial drugs. Additionally, these community-based health workers will provide education to community residents with the goal of increased disease prevention and improved knowledge of health care practices. The number of beneficiaries of the Program is expected to reach approximately 500,000 men, women, and children.

Complementary programming will be provided by the Consortium partners. The JHU/CCP will work with local NGOs to design mass media and community-based behavior change communication promoting modern health care and family planning. The MSM will provide technical assistance to the Program's technical staff and network of health care providers in areas including maternal health, infection control, and adolescent reproductive health.

The total five-year cost of the Program is approximately $10 million, out of which $7.37 million will be financed by USAID, while the Consortium will raise at least $2.5 million as a matching grant.

The U.S. Agency for International Development administers the U.S. foreign assistance program providing economic and humanitarian assistance in more than 80 countries worldwide.

Africare is a leader in aid to Africa as well as the oldest and largest African-American organization specializing in African aid. Over its 33-year history, Africare has delivered more than $400 million in assistance-representing over 2,000 projects and millions of beneficiaries-to 35 countries Africa-wide. Today, Africare's 150-plus programs reach families and communities in 26 nations in every region of the African continent.

Contact:

Angela Wiens,(202) 328-5371, awiens@africare.org

Copyright 2002, Africare. All rights reserved.