After 15 years of consistent declines in malaria cases and deaths, the last 3 years have seen progress slowing, with many countries now experiencing a challenging increase in malaria cases. There are many reasons for this increase, including a reduction in funding to reduce malaria, less urgency about the impact of malaria within affected countries and increased anti-malaria drug resistance.
RESULTS UK, a UK based organization that seeks to end health related problems and poverty is working alongside Hope for Future Generations (Ghana), CISMAT-SL (Sierra Leone), Health Promotion Tanzania- HDT and WACI Health to run a one-year Youth Leaders for Health programme in Ghana, Sierra Leone and Tanzania.
This one-year leadership development programme will support 25 young campaigners based in Ghana, Sierra Leone and Tanzania to develop the skills and knowledge needed to help accelerate progress to end malaria and strengthen health systems in these countries and globally.
The youth leaders will be influencing decision-makers during key moments such as national elections and the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting to try and end the malaria epidemic, achieve universal health coverage (UHC) and create lasting impact.
Eleven advocates from ten regions are representing Ghana on the project.
Their roles include:
• Attending a global advocacy training workshop in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to develop new skills, hear from experts and learn more about malaria and health system strengthening. This will enable participants to become leaders in advocacy for improved access to health.
• Putting newly developed skills into practice by meeting decision makers at international gatherings and summits such as the African Union Summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Kigali, Rwanda as well as other national, regional and global events.
• Developing own campaign and running campaigning activities such as hosting events attended by politicians and decision-makers, petitions to national Governments and speaking to the media to increase support for eradicating malaria and universal health coverage both in locally and globally.
• Making links with local decision makers such as parliamentarians and local government officials to advocate for change. • Working with other young people in your community to pass on your skills and knowledge and help them become champions for better access to health
• Monthly online meetings with other young people in the three countries to share ideas and improve campaigns.
HFFG is partnering the Ghana Health Service, The Ministry of Health, and the National Malaria Control Programme to implement the intervention in Ghana.