The Health Systems Advocacy Partnership was launched in Uganda during the project kickoff session in Kampala on 18 March 2016. The strategic partnership consists of Amref Flying Doctors, African Centre for Global Health and Social Transformation (Achest), Health Action International and Wemos, and is financed by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the fifth partner.
The five-year partnership aims at capacity building, lobby and advocacy on sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) in and for Kenia, Uganda and Zambia. At a later stage, the project will possibly be extended to a number of other African countries. The partnership works not only in the regional and national scope but takes also the global context into account.
In her speech at the launch, Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng, DG Ministry of Health, called the sexual and reproductive health and rights ‘a highest priority’ to the Ugandan government. ‘The ministry is heavily indebted to civil society organizations and their contribution to these rights.’ Dr. Francis Omaswa, director of Achest, had a clear vision of the partnership: ‘In the next five years, we will work together and create a strong network that helps strengthen health systems.’
Within the partnership, Wemos concentrates on Human Resources for Health, Governance and Financing. Mutual learning stands central to all three topics. As Anke Tijtsma, former director of Wemos, said during the kickoff: ‘We are here to learn from each other, to share our knowledge and to advocate for strong health systems in Africa. As a lobby and advocacy organization, Wemos hopes to bring forth the experiences and challenges from the countries we are working with at the Dutch government and the European Union. This will help them take their role in strengthening sexual and reproductive health and rights in Africa.’