Afya Jijini, which translates to “health in the city,” is a three-year USAID contract (with two option years) with the strategic goal of improving Nairobi City County’s institutional and management capacity to deliver health services. With IMA leadership and a strong consortium of local partners, this goal will be achieved through activities focused on three primary objectives:
- Increase access to and use of quality HIV services
- Improve access to and use of maternal, neonatal and child health services; family planning and reproductive health services; water, sanitation and hygiene; and nutrition services
- Strengthen county and sub-county health systems.
Afya Jijini works through highly-engaged, community-level organizations to reach key populations that are vulnerable to HIV infection. These community groups educate and engage a wide range of community members, including communities of faith, commercial sex workers, IV drug users and men who have sex with men, in order to reduce stigma, promote safety and prevent mother-to-child transmission.
The project saw early results. For example, to improve maternal and child health outcomes, one of the first steps was to encourage and empower health facilities to see patients on weekends. In the project’s first year, 35 facilities expanded hours in order to open seven days a week in targeted neighborhoods in Nairobi, seeing an additional 10,000 patients as a result.
Additionally, more than 3,000 mothers were reached with focused antenatal care and other maternal, neonatal and child health services as a result of the availability of weekend services. An additional 7,000 children benefited from weekend child health interventions.