Gabriel Udeh, kaduna
UNICEF and National Orientation Agency, NOA, have trained 30 Health educators on Communication for Development, C4D, to reduce morbidity and mortality in some local government areas in Kaduna State.
Those trained on C4D include Civil Society Organizations, CSOs, Chief Orientation and Mobilization Officers, CHOMOS, of NOA, were drawn from different local government areas of Soba, Giwa, Sudan, Kubau and others, expected to use C4D in their various LGAs for support for development by using the approach to promote positive and measurable behavior and social change in solving the problems.
Participants also expected to use tools such as advocacy, behavioral Change Communication, BCC, Social mobilization, interpersonal communication, and capacity building to support C4D to move the target audience into action. “A process that requires time to plan, implement and monitor”, an expert has said.
The three days training which ends on Friday in Zaria brought together, the representatives of Federation of Women Organisation of Nigeria, Women wings of CAN, Journalist’s for better health, Jobeth, among others from local government areas of Kaduna state facing the challenges of polio, malnutrition, malaria, diarrhea, HIV and AIDS and other diseases among children.
The essence of the training workshop, according to the Deputy Director of programs NOA, Lawal Haruna, was to use C4D to prevent morbidity and mortality, and diseases affecting children, by taken setting action.
Haruna said “The rampant cases of morbidity and mortality is high in Nigeria, most especially in the Northern part of the country and Kaduna State in particular. The high rate is caused by diseases, many of which are preventable if such actions are taken by the family members themselves that are practicing C4D, and it will reduce the incidence”, he said.
Haruna said the world would always rate down Nigeria simply because of one or two local governments or states with cases of the diseases which challenge the integrity of the those working to end the diseases.
“UNICEF has a convergence LG, so we decided to have convergence LGA where the cases are more rampant and pull our resources together to do one thing together using and bringing all partners together wherever they are working for whether malaria, malnutrition, diarrhea in harmony among others, instead doing it separately in theses LGs and bring it down. We believe the family members can use all communication channels to discuss the problem and solve them.
Also speaking to our correspondent, the trainer and C4D specialist, Mr. Odoh D. Okenyodo said they understand the pivotal role of health indicators in terms of improving the capacity to do things that improve their health, CHOMOS role in terms of building trust in government policies and programs and its pivotal roles.
According to him, based on their roles, there was the need for synergy among the three groups we sought for, to build up understanding and trust for proper planning of communication intervention by the group.
Mr. Okenyodo noted that in a project of that nature government, CSOs or private sector required communication support, adding that if the communication is not well planned would be half hazard and expensive with little or no achievement, hence the need the training on action plans.
“Bringing the three groups together is to achieve harmony and synergy to focus on one direction in terms of area of health to achieve greater results and community will be healthier”, Okenyodo said.