New Project Builds on IntraHealth's Family Planning Work in Rwanda

March 3, 2008, Chapel Hill, NC—The global public health organization IntraHealth International is launching a $275,000, 18-month media project to help the Rwandan government strengthen its political and institutional commitment to family planning and reproductive health throughout much of the country, the organization’s president announced today.

Pape Gaye, president and CEO of IntraHealth, said the organization will use the grant from The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation to engage the Rwandan media to facilitate policy dialogue and strengthen several local institutions that are promoting family planning and reproductive health. “IntraHealth has been actively collaborating with the Rwandan Ministry of Health to rebuild their health care delivery system following the 1994 genocide,” Gaye said. “With this new grant, we will be able to expand and solidify our collaboration with a broader range of local entities, ensuring that our technical support to this dynamic country is even more effective.”

This grant builds on IntraHealth’s current work in Rwanda to strengthen the policy environment for family planning and increase access to family planning services throughout the country. With funds provided by the United States government, IntraHealth has been building the capacity of health facilities and health workers in 23 of the country’s 30 districts to provide a full range of family planning services and information, including long-term and permanent contraceptive methods.

In addition, IntraHealth has been supporting national policy revision, curricula development and the efforts of local authorities to champion family planning.

“Over the last two years, through several innovative practices, we have seen the use of modern family planning methods nearly double in Rwanda,” said Laura Hoemeke, director of the IntraHealth-led Twubakane Decentralization and Health Program in Rwanda. “This initiative will support the growing demand for family planning by fostering the necessary political support to sustain the successes in family planning use.”

Through the Hewlett Foundation, IntraHealth will support legislators and other government officials to engage with their constituents on issues related to population and family planning. IntraHealth will work closely with opinion leaders, policy makers, and journalists to provide education and training on evidenced-based policies and practices, creating a supportive environment for evidence-based decision-making at all levels of the Rwandan government. IntraHealth will also document and disseminate evidence of Rwanda’s successes in population and family planning to date.

IntraHealth International is a global health nonprofit that champions the critical role of health workers in health and development. For over 30 years, IntraHealth has empowered health workers to better serve communities in need, fostering local solutions to health care challenges by improving health worker performance, strengthening health systems, harnessing technology, and leveraging partnerships. The nonprofit’s work is supported and funded by the US Agency for International Development, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, private foundations, corporations and individuals.

Contact: Laura Hoemeke
IntraHealth International
+1 919-360-7799