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DOVENET with the support of Friends of Nigeria (FON) Initiative had commenced work in Ikwo and Ohaukwu local government areas of Ebonyi state in order to curb the challenges caused by fistula in the state. Various activities such as town-hall meetings, community dialogues, home visits. Church outreaches and review meetings were organized in these LGAs of implementation in the month of February. Some of these activities were carried out by trained community volunteers. The meetings were attended by DOVENET staff, Ward Development Committee, Traditional leaders, Community Chiefs, Youth leaders, Women leaders, Health Committees, and members of the communities.

Town Hall Meeting

The Town-Hall Meetings were held with the goal of reaching out to the general population with appropriate messages on prevention of prolonged and obstructed labour (P/OL), obstetric fistula (OF), family planning (FP), awareness on availability of care, support and treatment of fistula, and awareness on the importance and right to access family planning services, antenatal care (ANC) and deliver at a chosen health facility. Volunteers were trained and also sensitized on reintegration of repaired fistula clients in their homes and communities. The communities were also taught on how women should have timely access to maternal health care. A total of 614 people were reached (348 male and 266 female) at the end of the town-hall meetings.

Home Visit

The Home Visits were conducted by the DOVENET staff and the trained WDCs who visited 180 homes and reached out 803 persons. The home sis it was aimed at mentoring pregnant mothers, promote family planning among members of households, and reaching household members with fistula prevention messages, availability of care, treatment, support services and reintegration and rehabilitation. Also 31 out of 48 pregnant mothers were referred for antenatal care, 3 out of 8 were referred to access family planning, 7 deliveries were recorded and 5 identified with pelvic organ prolapsed (POP).

Review Meetings

The Review Meetings were anchored by the DOVENET Project Team with the objective of building the capacity of the WDCs on quality program implementation, and data collection. The meetings were attended by the DOVENET staff, WDCs, Community Health Workers, Religious Leaders, Social Mobilization Officers (SMOs) and Head of Health Department. The challenges and lessons learnt were discussed along with the best practices. Also, recommendations for improvement were share, activity plans were developed and the monthly target shared.

Outcomes and achievements of activities carried out for the month

At the end of the activities, five (5) fistula clients were identified out of which 4 clients were mobilized and repaired. This was realized via interpersonal counseling, home visits, community dialogues, church outreaches, and town-hall meetings.

There were commitments from individuals and groups to improve on the family planning and fistula prevention with commitments for continued dissemination of information to communities.

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