14 July 2017
The Collectif des Femmes pour l’Education la Santé Familiale et l’Assainissement (Women’s Collective for Women for Education, Family Health and Sanitation, COFESFA YIRIWATON) will contribute to increasing early childhood development, the enrollment of children in primary school, and women’s empowerment in Mali, in support of the Global Strategy (2016-230). COFESFA will do this by increasing awareness, access to information and capacity of local public authorities on required investments in education – particularly health education. COFESFA will also facilitate increased accessibility and of the use of guidelines and best practices on adolescent sexual and reproductive health services, education and protection with a view to improving quality of services.
Through a 2016-2020 workplan geared at achieving the aforementioned objectives, COFESFA aims to reach over 176,000 adolescents, 120,000 women, 32,000 children and 52,000 newborns between 2016 and 2020. COFESFA will spend over $280,000 on these activities in 2016 alone.
The ‘grandmothers’ strategy’ is a key milestone in progress made against this commitment. It’s centered on training grandmothers and older women on STIs, HIV/AIDS, family planning, children’s rights and optimizing communication with adolescent girls. This strategy makes it possible to involve grandmothers in raising awareness among adolescents about STIs, HIV / AIDS, family planning and children’s rights. This aim is to avert sexually transmitted diseases, early and unwanted pregnancy and school de-enrollment among adolescents. It’s evident that this behavior is in part attributed to lack of communication and the intervention is based on evidence suggesting that children talk more with their grandmothers than with their mothers on sexual themes.