Marketplace presentations will be made in a breakout-style session, with three presentations per room. Each presentation will last 20 minutes, including Q&A. Marketplace presentations share new tools, innovations, projects and topics relating to a theme.
Room 1: Youth Engagement
Sexuality education during the COVID-19 pandemic
When Colombia implemented strict restrictions to prevent COVID-19 spreading, a school-based sexuality education project had to adapt quickly. Valiente (meaning “Brave”) aims to reduce teenage pregnancy and gender-based violence (GBV), especially sexual violence, by empowering children and adolescents to exercise their sexual and reproductive rights and to increase their political and social advocacy skills. In response to COVID-19, Profamilia developed Valiente en Casa (“Brave at Home”). As participants belong to vulnerable communities, often with limited to access to the internet or even smartphones, the project has drawn on local culture and traditional gathering places to reach all families with information and printed teaching materials. The tutoring continues through simple communication means with weekly homework. The strategy has succeeded in engaging not only young people but also caregivers in GBV prevention and sexuality education.
Presenter: Lina María Castaño Mesa, Projects, Investigations and Advocacy Chief Organization Profamilia Association
Tackling a new opponent: Grassroot Soccer’s “SKILLZ COVID-19 Response” curriculum
Grassroot Soccer (GRS) is an adolescent health organization delivering evidence-based programming to build young people’s sexual and reproductive health and rights and life skills assets, increase access to health services and improve adherence to healthy behaviours. GRS trains young adult mentors (coaches) to deliver “SKILLZ” curricula, using soccer metaphors and activities to convey important health concepts, and has reached over 2.7 million young people in over 60 countries. GRS’ new open-source “SKILLZ COVID-19 Response” curriculum addresses COVID-19 preventative behaviours, myth busting and mental well-being in an engaging and youth-friendly way. It has been translated into seven languages, can be delivered stand-alone or within other health programmes, and offers guidance on remote delivery to continue engaging adolescents in compliance with social distancing regulations.
Presenter: Jeff DeCelles, Technical Director, Curriculum & Training, Grassroot Soccer and Dennis Dube, Grassroot Soccer Global Partnerships Monitoring & Evaluation Assistant and former Coach
The International Federation of Medical Students Associations, UNFPA and Prezi have teamed up to provide accurate information in an engaging way to young people from young people during the COVID-19 pandemic. With several youth organizations from around the globe, our organizations have worked collectively to draft the scripts with evidence-based information on the impacts of the pandemic for young people as well as possible solutions. Six topics were covered: fundamental information about COVID-19; how young people are affected by COVID-19; sexual and reproductive health during the pandemic; mental health; young leaders taking action; and impacts on gender equality. These scripts were translated into multiple languages and then recorded, with graphics, using the Prezi platform. The content of these videos can easily be recorded in a different language, with local context-specific details.
Presenter: Egle Janusonyte, Liaison Officer for SRHR Issues including HIV and AIDS Organization, International Federation of Medical Students Associations
Room 2: Nutrition/WASH
COVID-19 pandemic and mitigation strategies: implications for maternal and child health and nutrition
This session will discuss the implications of COVID-19 on maternal and child health and nutrition, highlighting lessons from positive outlier countries in childhood stunting reduction from the Exemplars in Global Health programme. In light of COVID-19, Exemplars research partners have further explored the indirect and direct effects of the pandemic on maternal and child nutrition and the near- and long-term consequences. The discussion will include food security, community-based monitoring, WASH and effectively leveraging community health workers in the context of COVID-19. Key recommendations to address the current challenges posed by COVID-19 span investments in sectors that have sustained direct and indirect impacts on nutrition outcomes, emphasizing success in nutrition is multifactorial, not only a function of food security.
Presenter: Goutham Kandru,Nutrition Lead, Exemplars in Global Health Organization, Exemplars in Global Health, Gates Ventures; Dr. Zulfiqar Bhutta, Co-Director, Centre for Global Child Health, SickKids
Ensuring linkages between nutrition and food security during COVID-19
With the emergence of COVID-19, ensuring access to nutritious food and securing agricultural and livelihood support are critical for protecting vulnerable individuals whose incomes and access to food have been decimated by COVID-19. Through its COVID-19 response initiative, the ENRICH Programme in Bangladesh, Myanmar, Kenya and Tanzania is distributing biofortified crops and other locally available nutritious vegetable seeds to households with children under 5 years old, vulnerable women or adolescent girls to ensure they are food secure during the COVID-19 period. This has also contributed to food security and livelihoods: some farmers have already started selling surplus food to the community, confirming economic empowerment at the household level.
Presenter: Dr. Asrat Dibaba Tolossa, Chief of Party, ENRICH, World Vision Canada
MUSEFO Care Groups on Facebook: ensuring engagement during the pandemic
The Multisectoral Food and Nutrition Security (MUSEFO) project, implemented in 180 villages in Cambodia, uses the Care Group approach, a community-driven behaviour change model that combines cascaded training, support groups and repeated messaging with nearly comprehensive coverage. To maintain engagement and continue care group sessions during COVID-19 movement restrictions, and to provide key materials and information on COVID-19, the team conceptualized the MUSEFO Facebook initiative. Facebook Messenger groups were used to create a virtual replica of the care group network. Virtual engagement improved the way in which care group sessions were conducted and helped people to retain key messages. Based on this experience, the project team is convinced of the value of engaging via social media, and this component could remain a key feature of Care Group approach in Cambodia.
Presenter: Sona Sharma, Social and Behavior Change Advisor, Action Against Hunger – USA
Room 3: Sexual and Reproductive Health / Family Planning
Malawi: encouraging family planning counselling that promotes meaningful choice during the COVID-19 pandemic
A project led by Breakthrough ACTION and ideas42 is using behavioural methodology to design solutions to support providers in offering family planning (FP) counselling, in a way that promotes meaningful client choice and addresses behavioural barriers. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, we were about to begin a randomized control trial to test the impact of the group counselling tool (among others) and we had to rapidly adapt our implementation and evaluation strategy. Furthermore, as facility-based FP services shifted to the community, we wanted to ensure that our tools would be used in a way that enabled the sustainable delivery of high-quality FP services. Based on findings from extensive user-testing and an initial feasibility test, we were able to adapt our tools for use in the community context, and we are currently implementing the counselling tool with a referral card in communities with the assistance of the Ministry of Health FP coordinators.
Presenters: Ely McElwee, Senior Associate, Breakthrough ACTION/ideas42 and Abigail Sellman, Associate, Breakthrough ACTION/ideas42
Every Newborn Action: regional and country responses to the COVID-19 pandemic
Without positive efforts to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on maternal and newborn health (MNH) services, countries stand to lose the hard-won gains made in recent years. With 93 countries implementing the Every Newborn Action Plan through adapted national or integrated plans, the Every Newborn group remains active in supporting countries to achieve the set targets and milestones. Since the start of the pandemic, the Every Newborn Country Implementation Group have used their regular meetings to share ideas and best practices in response to COVID-19 and to elevate country-specific needs. Regional efforts have supported countries by sharing the latest information on MNH and COVID-19 and providing platforms for south-south learning exchanges. This session will reflect on the impact of COVID-19 on MNH in the highest-burden settings, share learnings and best practices, and discuss next steps.
Presenters: Host: Gagan Gupta, Health Specialist Maternal and Newborn Health, UNICEF. Panel: Ornella Lincetto – Medical Officer Newborn Health, WHO HQ; Rajesh Mehta, WHO Regional Office for South East Asia; Atnafu Getachew Asfaw, UNICEF Regional Office for South Asia; Fatima Gohar, UNICEF Regional Office for Eastern and Southern Africa; Assumpta Muriithi, WHO Regional Office for Africa; Tommy Kitamura, UNICEF Regional Office for the Middle East & North Africa; Khalid Siddeeg, WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean
Voice-Up: sexual health information and support in the hands of adolescents
In the unprecedented crisis and disruption caused by COVID-19, HCDExchange and IDEO.org’s Billion Girls CoLab quickly responded, showing the power of collaboration to unite and mobilize our communities to support adolescent sexual and reproductive health. We developed an online survey to help us choose one challenge that organizations were excited about tackling. Self-care came top of the list, and this was explored further in a three-week design sprint. We brainstormed ideas, built rough prototypes and got early feedback on ways to support adolescent self-care. The result is a live prototype of Voice-Up, a resource that includes free downloadable self-care assets to distribute through existing adolescent programming channels. The site also helps partners find youth-friendly services near them and offers inspiration for self-care programming.
Presenter: MaqC Eric Gitau, Director, HCDExchange; and Maryann Wangari, HCD Consultant, HCDExchange; and Rasheed Mutaha, Design Master, Maisha Youth
Room 4: Digital Health
Mitigating the effect of COVID-19: distance counselling in sexual and reproductive health
In Peru, with care now being directed towards COVID-19, sexual and reproductive health (SRH) ceased to be a priority. These projects aim to regain attention for SRH, using resources from society and technology, and focusing on vulnerable populations. The Kuskalla platform integrates the normal triage and detection of COVID-19 during pregnancy and delivery and postpartum. It articulates the connection between retired midwives, the primary-care midwives and final year midwifery students. TeleNanu links artificial intelligence and sexual and reproductive health counselling for adolescents and young people through a chatbot via Facebook, a familiar platform for this target audience.
Presenter: Ysis Roa, Researcher, Universidad de San Martín de Porres and Ana Miluzka Baca, Teacher/Researcher, Universidad de San Martín de Porres
Rapidly adapting digital health tools to support the continuity of primary health-care services during the COVID-19 pandemic
This presentation will focus on adapting to ensure the continuity of critical primary health-care services in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Medic Mobile Inc will discuss its agile approach to partnerships and innovation in adapting the Community Health Toolkit (CHT) to support remote onboarding and training of community health workers (CHWs) and their supervisors. We will also highlight the critical need to prioritize and protect CHWs’ mental and physical health and safety, including through routine self-health checks. We will introduce the CHT forum, which supports communities of practice for knowledge sourcing and sharing, open source platforms and integration and cross-sectoral collaboration. Lastly, we will discuss success factors, lessons learned and current opportunities.
Presenter: Helen Olsen, Impact Manager, Medic Mobile and Simon Mbae, Partnerships Manager, Medic Mobile
COVID-19 virtual marketplace: matching supply and demand in times of crisis and beyond
CORE Group and NeedsList are partnering to give the hardest-to-reach communities on the frontline of the COVID-19 pandemic a direct link to suppliers and service providers so they can quickly obtain what they need, when they need it, rather than waiting for long assessments and bureaucratic processes to deliver aid. With a focus on women and girls, this initiative aims to match the supply chain needs of vulnerable communities with the abundant life-saving resources and generosity that have emerged in the COVID-19 response. Its two other objectives are to ensure that public health information, training and resources are made available quickly to the most vulnerable and to identify and better understand vulnerable communities’ needs relating to COVID-19.
Presenter: Natasha Freidus, CEO, NeedsList
Room 5: Digital Health
Collaboration in a digital age for better health outcomes
Transform Health, a new multisectoral coalition, is creating a global movement that will bring together national and global stakeholders across sectors who recognize that expanding the use of digital technology and increasing access to data will improve primary health care and ultimately enable the achievement of universal health coverage by 2030. The coalition campaigns for and collaborates with individuals, particularly women and young people, as active contributors/agents of change at every stage, as well as with governments, organizations and institutions that recognize and support the fundamental role of digital technologies and data in improving health outcomes. A digital health and data governance framework will allow for full beneficial and ethical use of health data, while safeguarding data privacy, ownership and security.
Presenters: Nanjira Sambuli and Dykkie, Co-Chairs, Transform Health / Fondation Botnar
Digital Health Assistant for Triage and Mental Health
We built digital health assistants (chatbots) that were used by the federal government of Brazil (as well as local and state health systems and private organizations) to triage, educate and monitor 1million+ patients. We also launched an app for mental health support of vulnerable populations. The app, called Vitalk, consists of i) a mental health checkup / risk assessment; ii) psychoeducational exercises based on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and positive psychology; iii) asynchronous chat with a therapist at a fifth of the cost of traditional therapy. We believe that our approach is a scaleable way to therefore support the psychoemotional health of women and adolescents.
Presenters: Mariana Negrao, Co-Founder, TNH Health
Promoting respectful maternity care through digital health: the Midwife CheckMate initiative
The Midwife Checkmate initiative aims to improve attitudes of providers towards pregnant women during delivery and to promote service continuity during COVID-19, starting with the northern region of Ghana. Midwife Checkmate, an interactive cartoon app to engage midwives to provide respectful maternity care, is being created with women who have recently received skilled delivery care, pregnant women, midwives and the Nurses and Midwifery Council. The app’s features will include customer care information and patients’ rights charter. Questions about birthing scenarios, and multiple answer options showing acceptable/unacceptable responses will be interactively portrayed. Stories will be collected from pregnant women about the care they received to promote good practice, share with communities and measure success. Feedback will be communicated to appropriate government authorities for appropriate action and sanctions where necessary.
Presenters: Vitus Atanga, Program Assistant, Reproductive Health, UNFPA