Although funding for our Evidence for Action programme in Sierra Leone ended at the end of 2015, one of the ways the campaigning work lives on is through local advocacy groups.
In a community called Koinadugu, district level activists, led by Steven Gibrilla, have set up the MamaYe Koinadugu Advocacy Group where they have taken the campaign name and message on as their own.
The community based organisation works closely with other local groups and authorities to conduct awareness raising campaigns and activities, advocating for maternal and newborn survival.
The group worked with Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) and the District Health Management Team to conduct a blood donation drive at a local secondary school. Haemorrhage continues to result in the deaths of too many women in Sierra Leone – deaths which could be prevented with access to safe blood. As a result in the blood drive, they enrolled 24 new voluntary blood donors, helping to increase the supply of safe blood.
They also worked with the District Youth Council to get young people involved in monitoring health facilities to see if the seven health enablers are in place for a safe clinic.
They use national and international days to amplify their message. During the official launch of the Maternal and Child Health Week, the MamaYe Koinadugu Advocacy Group joined the District Health Management Team and MSF-Aids to observe a week-long of activities in the district.
They also use the media to share their message widely and have a regular airtime slot on a local radio station to help educate people on teenage pregnancy.
To find out more about MamaYe, please visit the website www.mamaye.org