One of the largest Christian relief and development organizations in the world has launched a new two-year, $750,000 (USD) health project aimed at transforming the lives of people in Bahr el Ghazal region in southern Sudan.
Launched last week, Sudan Health Transformation Project (SHTP) is being implemented by World Vision Southern Sudan (WVSS) in Bahr el Ghazals Tonj South County in cooperation with the Sudan Education and Development Agency (SEDA). According to World Vision, the partnership with SEDA is aimed at increasing community involvement in the projects, and building the capacity of health care workers.
The project seeks to strengthen the health system in the project area and the capacity of SEDA staff and counterpart health workers, said Molly Mwangi, health program manager, WVSS.
Coming as it does after the signing the Comprehensive Peace Agreement between the Government of Sudan and the Sudan Peoples Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A), the health project is expected to play a crucial role in helping the health system in southern Sudan move its focus from emergency assistance to a sustainable development approach.
Under the project, World vision and SEDA will renovate two primary healthcare centers (PHCCs) and seven primary healthcare units (PHCUs as well as ensure that drugs and other medical supplies are readily available to Tonj Souths population, estimated at 300,000.
By improving access to healthcare, the project hopes to encourage more people to seek treatment from the health facilities, rather than staying at home without treatment, World Vision reported.
Immunization campaigns will also be conducted across the county and Expanded Program of Immunization (EPI) services offered in the PHCCs and outreach immunization centers to be established at the community level.
Additionally, under the project, health education will be carried out both at the heath facility level, in schools and at the community level during EPI activities and other community awareness meetings.
According to World Vision, areas of focus will include nutrition education, malaria prevention, reproductive health, MCH services including breast feeding, environmental sanitation and hygiene and HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention campaigns.
This is a timely project that will greatly transform numerous lives in Tonj South county, said Dr. Manyang Agoth, the director of curative and pharmaceutics services in southern Sudans ministry of health.
World Vision reports that SHTP is being funded by John Snow International (JSI) and the Office of US Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA).
Aside from the SHTP, WVSSs other ongoing health programs include a PHC project in Gogrial East funded by CIDA; an OFDA-funded PHC project for Shilluk Kingdom; an emergency health and Kala-Azar prevention project funded by ECHO and a PHC project for Ezo payam funded by WVUS.