A TCI-Trained Coach Is Honored for Championing Family Planning in the Abidjan Commune of Port Bouet
Contributor: Bienvenu Attoumbre
Before The Challenge Initiative (TCI) arrived in the Cote d’Ivoire city of Abidjan, the municipality was not heavily involved in family planning activities. Yvette Gnangoran is a health care provider and president of the women’s associations in the Abidjan urban commune of Port Bouet who was trained to be a TCI master coach. She shared:
For us, service providers, we did not have any specific approaches or mechanisms that allowed us visibility to discuss our activities that contribute to improving health, and in particular family planning, with elected authorities. With the arrival of TCI, I benefited from its coaching approach and was able to strengthen the capacity of fellow health providers through technical coaching on the high-impact interventions. I also adopted managerial coaching around the management of free Special FP days and resource mobilization to ensure more effective implementation of this intervention. TCI works with health system and community-level coaches in six communes in the city of Abidjan, and my commune is part of it.”
Yvette noticed that the mayor of Port Bouet had not yet signed his financial commitment of 10 million West African CFA francs (more than $15,000 USD) towards implementing TCI’s high-impact interventions, which aim to increase access to family planning information and services especially among the urban poor. As a result, she organized coaching activities in her neighborhood, intentionally inviting high-level authorities of the Port Bouet government to participate. In addition, she traveled to other neighborhoods in the commune to conduct coaching activities and sensitize women and youth to family planning, raising their awareness and strengthening their knowledge about the benefits of contraceptives.
Because of her ability to mobilize the women of Port Bouet for family planning, the mayor of the commune formally recognized Yvette as a family planning champion and then recruited her to serve as a Health Education Agent in the social and health department of the mayor’s office. This will extend her impact by enabling her to link more communities and health centers across Abidjan, not just in her commune. In addition, the mayor signed his 10-million financial commitment after observing firsthand the success that TCI’s coaching approach has had in strengthening Yvette’s ability to better serve the citizens of Port Bouet.
Dr. Olivier Koutou, a general physician in charge of projects in Port Bouet, said:
Yvette was honored and rightly recognized for her coaching and leadership skills as well as for her role as a community master coach. Her commitment and exemplary work in coaching in the commune facilitated the release of the commune’s financial contribution for the implementation of the commune’s FP/AYSRH plan. She also worked hard to raise awareness among women and young girls about family planning.”