OpenIDEO is an open innovation platform. Join our global community to solve big challenges for social good. Sign Up / Login or Learn more

Using mobile technology to break barriers in accessing family planning commodities, services and information’s by women and girls in remote

Health For All Coalition aims to use Mobile SMS based platform to address access to family planning commodities and services in Sierra Leone

Photo of Alhassan
3 0

Written by

What specific problem(s) are you trying to address?

This innovation will address challenges of women and young girls in accessing family planning (FP) commodities and services of their Choice, it will also further help them to have comprehensive access to sexual reproductive health information’s and counseling supports and increased demand for FP services. Sierra Leone is characterized by a youthful population, it is important to recognize that high fertility is seen among adolescents as well. Sierra Leone has one of the highest rates of teenage pregnancy in the world; 28 percent of female adolescents between the ages of 15 to 19 are either mothers or are pregnant with their first child. Almost half (46.8%) of deaths among adolescent girls are related to complications in childbirth.

What are some of your unanswered questions about the problem(s) you are working to address?

This innovation seeks to address the following unanswered problems; - Teenage pregnancy - Low modern contraceptive prevalence rate among all women. - Low demand for family planning services among women and young girls - Lack/inadequate information for comprehensive sexual and reproductive health services.

Explain Your Idea

This innovation involves, using mobile technology through a user friendly SMS based platform for Women’s and young girl’s engagement in addressing the set challenges, the project will collect data on women and girls in the target communities and connect them through the SMS based platform. Young girls in Schools, out of school girls, married and unmarried women will be specifically targeted for this intervention. Using the available data base (young girls in schools, out of school girls, married and unmarried women) through the SMS based platform, information on sexual reproductive health and services and counseling including family planning will be provided on a weekly basis. This will improve demand for SRH&R services thereby contribute to increase contraceptive prevalence rate for women and young girls. Through the platform we will also collect data on the nearest available service delivery points and service providers including their expertise within the target communities. Using the platform women and young girls will be link to a service delivery points and a trained provider for the provision of SRH services, further counseling and provision of the commodities. Follow ups will be made by Health For All Coalition (HFAC) district team on the provision of the services including counseling and commodities. HFAC team will updates (sharing of data/information) with district health management teams (DHMTs) on SRH service delivery challenges on a regular basis.

Name the three most important ways that your idea will address your identified problem(s).

1) The engagement of women and girls through a user friendly SMS based platform on sexual reproductive health and rights to make wise decision on their sexual reproductive health issues. 2) Linking/connecting the beneficiaries with the service providers to get access to reproductive health commodities and services including counseling services. 3) Follow up with service providers, DHMTs and MOHS at national level on service delivery challenges and recommended actions.

How is your idea unique?

The idea is unique, because it provides the environment for women’s and girls to have access to sexual reproductive health information including family planning through the SMS based platform. The system provides maximum confidentiality/privacy for women and girls to take informed decision about themselves and further empowers them with the information to demand for family planning and SRH services. A greater part of this innovation is that it also links the beneficiaries to the service delivery points and providers which make it easy for the beneficiaries (women and girls) to access family planning services within their communities; this builds further trust and confidence in the health care system. The innovation will provide effective feedback to beneficiaries and service providers at all levels most especially on the aspect of timely address of service delivery challenges. Effective feedback mechanisms improves confidence in the innovation and the health care system.

What are some outstanding concerns or questions that you have regarding your idea?

My concern is how to get the men and boys involved. In the target area for the project, men dominance is prominent and mostly poses barrier for women and young girls’ sexual reproductive health rights and decisions. Scaling up of this initiative may have to address the involvement of the men and boys in this innovation .

Who are your end users?

This project will reach out to 10,000 women and girls of reproductive age 11-49 years.

Where will your idea be implemented?

  • Sierra Leone

What is the primary type of emergency setting where your innovation would operate?

  • Community at risk of disaster
  • Other

Tell us more about the emergency setting that you intend to implement in

Sierra Leone has the highest maternal mortality figures in the world. About 40% of maternal deaths recorded are teenagers. The Country also records one of the highest rates of teenage pregnancy in the world,resulting in young girls drop out of school, high level of poverty, increase in child marriage, rape and low contraceptive prevalence rate . Since the end of the Civil war, the country has experienced series of disasters and outbreaks ranging from Cholera, Ebola, flooding and mudslides.

What is your organization's name?

Health For All Coalition-Sierra Leone (HFAC)

Tell us more about you.

Health For All Coalition(HFAC) is Civil Society Non- Governmental Advocacy Network on health and health related issues in Sierra Leone. It was established in April 2007 following nation-wide consultations with likeminded Civil Society groups during a National Civil Society Conference held in Kenema. The Coalition was officially launched in October 2008 at the Princess Christian Maternity hospital (PCMH) by Her Excellency the First Lady Mrs. Sia Nyama Koroma, Second lady Mrs. Kadija Sam Sumana and chaired by the Chief Medical Officer Dr. Kisito Daoh. Since its establishment in April 2007, Health For All Coalition has undertaken several awareness raising, advocacy, monitoring and capacity building activities both locally and International

Organizational Characteristics

  • Indigenous-led organization
  • Youth-led organization
  • Locally/community-led organization

What is the current scale of your proposed innovation?

  • Still in planning phase and does not exist yet

Experience in Implementation Country(ies)

  • Yes, for more than one year.

Expertise in Sector

  • Yes, for more than a year.

Organization Location

HFAC team are based in Sierra Leone. Our national secretariat is located in the capital city Freetown and other team members based in the district and Chiefdom headquarter towns.

What is your organizational status?

  • Registered non-profit, charity, NGO, or community-based organization.

What is the maturity of your innovation?

  • Early Stage Innovation: exploring my innovation, refining, researching, and gathering inspiration.



Join the conversation:

Photo of OpenIDEO

Hi Alhassan and team!

An important reminder, Refinement Phase closes this Thursday, October 26 at 11:30pm PST.

We can only consider complete submissions, so please make sure that you have reviewed the Feedback and Refinement Phase Checklists and answered all of the questions on the platform. Note that we added one more multiple choice question to the end of the form.

If you're having trouble figuring out how to edit your idea, please refer to this guidance:

Best of luck!

View all comments