Leading the Charge to Improve Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health in Her Community

Speeches Shim

Wednesday, March 30, 2022
She discusses the delivery plan with a pregnant woman by using the job aid.
I.KAMATE, Communication Officer for Keneya Nièta

Anatou wears many hats: Housewife, mother, and community leader

Anatou Doumbia is 43 years old, married, and has six children. While most women her age in Komogola village in the Sanso Health Area of Bougouni District have not attended school, she is proud to have earned a primary school degree. Anatou is a community leader being trained and supported by Kènèya Nièta, USAID’s flagship community health initiative in Mali. She uses her knowledge to make the village of Komogola a model for community mobilization to improve maternal, newborn, and child health. Through her skills and commitment, she has become a trusted health resource, not only in her village, but also in neighboring villages.

Committed to the well-being of her community, Anatou spends her afternoons visiting pregnant women and mothers of children under five years old in their homes. "I have been trained and coached to serve my community and therefore, I have to fully play this role for its well-being," she says.

Every Monday morning, she gathers members from village women’s groups which are supported by the GSAN (community nutrition group) and the local water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) committee within her community health platform. In these sessions she discusses household health, collects data from household visits for children under five and pregnant women, learns about the difficulties group members face when carrying out their planned activities, and proposes concrete solutions for positive change. Every Thursday, Anatou and the members of the village women’s group also mobilize mothers for routine vaccination of children under five.

Anatou with women of the village of Sousounkoro
She is conducting educative session with a job aid on the benefits of ANC services
I.KAMATE, Communication Officer for Keneya Nièta

A naturally creative person, Anatou has composed songs, poems, and drama to inform and sensitize the community on the benefits of seeking health care services. Once a month, under Anatou’s tutelage, the women of Komogola conduct information and outreach activities in neighboring villages through songs, poems, and drama. Rahama Ballo, a member of the GSAN, says: "Anatou is playing her role as a leader well. She has been able to bring a lot of initiatives to help people adopt healthier behaviors".

With Anatou’s support, Komogola is now one of the villages in the Sanso health area where all children are vaccinated, all pregnant women have at least four antenatal care (ANC) consultations and give birth in the health center, and the community uses health care and services early and often. Thanks in large part to Anatou’s leadership, Komogola  is a major contributor to improved antenatal care indicators, especially ANC4 which measures the percentage of pregnant women who have received all four ANC consultations prior to giving birth.

Anatou is a member of her village community health platform. USAID Kènèya Nièta, implemented by University Research Co., works with village community health platforms in the regions of Mopti, Ségou, and Sikasso to improve maternal, newborn, and child health by strengthening the community health system in Mali.  

Anatou with a lactating mother
She provides nutritional advice to the mother of children under 5 years old
I.KAMATE, Communication Officer for Keneya Nièta

 

About the story

Anatou is a member of her village community health platform. USAID Kènèya Nièta, implemented by University Research Co., works with village community health platforms in the regions of Mopti, Ségou, and Sikasso to improve maternal, newborn, and child health by strengthening the community health system in Mali. 

 

Last updated: August 01, 2022

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