Rwanda Symposium 2017

In January a true milestone was reached for the Health[e]Families project in Rwanda. We have come to the end of this 3-years program funded by Merck for Mothers Foundation and there are many achievements to celebrate.

We are proud to report that we trained 250 midwives, 90 community health workers and more than 2000 maternal community workers in the southern province of Rwanda.

250 midwives from 34 health center and district hospitals, have successfully completed the Female&Family[e]Education course. We look forward to see them continue learning and sharing their newly gained knowledge in maternal and neonatal health with their colleagues. 90 community workers in charge have not only studied theoretical modules with the Health[e]Community course but also shared their knowledge through facilitation sessions with ASMs, the Animeteur Santé Maternel, specialized in community work with a focus on maternal health. More than 2000 ASMs learned about nutrition, early detection of breast cancer, breastfeeding and referral of a sick newborn.

To mark these important achievements a symposium was organized in Huye (Southern Rwanda) on Tuesday 24th January 2017. Representatives from the Ministry of Health, Dr. Augustin Sendegeya, the Principal of the University of Rwanda, Dr. Jeanne Kagwiza, Director of RBC, Dr. Felix Sayinzoga, Deputy Vice Chancellor of Kampala International University, Prof. Dr. Patrick Kyamanywa and the vice mayor of Huye Christine Niwumugeni were present as guests of honor. More than 100 participants attended the symposium aimed to disseminate the program results and connecting these results to maternal health activities in Rwanda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) developed by WHO. The morning session started with a key note lecture by Prof. Dr. Patrick Kyamanywa on maternal health and the SDGs. The session was followed by the opening speeches of the vice mayor and Dr. Nadine Pakker, managing director of Health[e]Foundation, who welcomed everyone to this special event. The symposium proceeded with a presentation on the situation on maternal health in Rwanda by Dr. Felix Sayinzoga. Prof. Dr. Patrick Kyamanywa presented the results and the symposium ended with an encouraging speech by Dr. Sendegeya Augustin of the Ministry of Health. We are all looking forward to continuation of this fruitful collaboration and expanding the program to other districts of Rwanda.