Strategic Stakeholder Engagements

The NURHI 2 advocacy strategy and efforts are geared towards achieving increased support for family planning from key stakeholders at the federal, state and local government levels, as well as in the community. To achieve this, a plan was developed to continue engaging and educating stakeholders (including political, traditional and religious leaders) and encouraging them to use their influence in support of family planning. NURHI 2 focuses on practical, results-oriented advocacy at the national, state and local government levels to facilitate a positive policy environment in Lagos, Kaduna and Oyo States, as well as at the national level of discourse.

At the national level, NURHI 2 is liaising with and contributing to goals set by the Association for the Advancement of Family Planning, the Federal Ministry of Health and other family planning partners and donors. This effort focuses on advancing the replication and scalability agenda, including supporting the operationalisation of the national blueprint and collaborating with partners, donors and governments to sustain family planning towards the achievement of the national goal.

At the state and local government levels, advocacy efforts are coordinated to ensure proper synergies and linkages through a participatory process that involves key collaborating partners. One such key partner is the Advocacy Core Groups. NURHI 2’s model for the advocacy core group consists of committed ‘community voices’ that work on increasing support for family planning among policy makers and religious and traditional leaders. Membership includes Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and partners working on maternal and reproductive health and family planning, family planning coordinators at the State Ministry of Health and influential retired individuals, such as government officials. The group works closely but independently with the state government to support NURHI 2’s advocacy process, strategy development and implementation.

With their capacity built over the years by NURHI, the advocacy core groups in phase 2 have evolved into self-sustaining civil society organisations, duly registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission. These groups now take the lead in facilitating all advocacy activities in their respective states, including advocacy-based town hall meetings at the local government level. The town hall meeting is an important feedback forum created by the NURHI project. It creates an opportunity for community leaders and members to have a dialogue with the local government chairpersons and other policy makers on family planning and reproductive health in general. The forum has helped to build trust and improve relations between the people and their leaders by providing insight into leaders’ engagement in improving the health of women in their community.

NURHI 2 is also committed to ensuring that the government strengthens its ownership of these efforts and institutionalises successful NURHI models and best practices for the achievement of the national- and state-level family planning agenda. For this to happen, the responsible functionaries and machineries of government need to fully appreciate their critical roles and commit to providing the expected leadership. One way to achieve this vision is through state-specific visioning workshops. Strategic visioning workshops with key stakeholders of state governments and non-governmental partners create opportunities to review family planning programming directions and performances to achieve creative reforms and improve policy actions while building synergies across implementing partners and ensuring sustainability of proven interventions. The workshops should increase coordination, political commitment and government ownership to scale up interventions at the state and local government levels. Participants include state leadership from the ministries of health and finance, primary health care development agencies, budget and planning departments, women’s and youth affairs agencies, as well as local government, CSOs and other significant stakeholders.

Introduction

The advocacy thematic area of the Nigerian Urban Reproductive Health Initiative (NURHI) complements service delivery and demand generation efforts to ensure an environment where policy makers, religious and traditional leaders and the media are very supportive of family planning.

Advocacy Kits and Policy Briefs

The NURHI 2 advocacy approach creates an enabling environment for family planning through improved policy actions and favourable dialogue from the community, religious leaders and media. This approach complements service delivery and demand generation efforts by ensuring increased uptake of high-quality family planning services.

Media-based Advocacy

The NURHI 2 advocacy approach creates an enabling environment for family planning through improved policy actions and favourable dialogue from the community, religious leaders and media. This approach complements service delivery and demand generation efforts by ensuring increased uptake of high-quality family planning services.

Faith-based Advocacy

The NURHI 2 advocacy approach creates an enabling environment for family planning through improved policy actions and favourable dialogue from the community, religious leaders and media. This approach complements service delivery and demand generation efforts by ensuring increased uptake of high-quality family planning services.

Advocacy Core Groups

The NURHI 2 advocacy approach creates an enabling environment for family planning through improved policy actions and favourable dialogue from the community, religious leaders and media. This approach complements service delivery and demand generation efforts by ensuring increased uptake of high-quality family planning services.


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