Giving Voice to Women’s Health Education

“Before the training, I tried to conduct health education sessions, but I felt uncomfortable.”

By Tarka Bahadur Thapa and Kathy Griffith*
Translated by Lalita Chaudhary

“That has changed!” said Ujeli Devi, a Female Community Health Volunteer (FCHV) in Bajhang, Nepal. “All the credit goes to the training. We had the opportunity to learn more about best healthcare practices for women and children and the role of FCHVs to raise the health status in local communities.”

When the United Mission to Nepal (UMN) started its Abundant Health Project in Daulichaur, Bajhang, it trained FCHVs and the Village Development Committee in birth preparedness and other vital subjects around motherhood. After the training and with regular support from the project staff, Devi started to hold mothers’ health group meetings in her local community. During these meetings, she led discussions on safe motherhood practices, family planning, nutrition, and sanitation.

Mothers gather together for a health group meeting in Bajhang, Nepal. PHOTO COURTESY OF UNITED MISSION TO NEPAL

Devi is pleased when she sees mothers discussing their health issues in the community after a meeting. In response, many participating mothers have referred pregnant women to the local government health facility for maternal, newborn, and child health services, which this project is also helping to support.

Because of the Abundant Health Project training, women now feel confident to raise their voices in their community. They are united to work and are empowered to share their knowledge and skills with each other. Ujeli Devi is thankful to the project staff for their ongoing support. For the past four months, she has conducted monthly meetings, and plans to continue the work she has started. 

For women and children everywhere, the importance of quality health services and the ongoing reinforcement of best health practices cannot be emphasized enough. Global Health is committed to affirming women to raise their strong, confident voices in their communities to enable better health for all. To support Global Ministries’ Global Health Unit in the implementation of the Abundant Health Initiative, give to the Advance #3021770.

*Tarka Bahadur Thapa is program manager for United Mission to Nepal. Kathy Griffith is program manager for Global Health’s Mother, Newborn, Child Health program.