Community Based Volunteers Skills Audit Survey Report

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Ministry of Health
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University of Zambia, Medical Library
Following the realignment of the functions of social welfare, community development and maternal and child health under one ministry, the ministry of Community Development, Mother and Child Health (MCDMCH) – a research project was undertaken by the new ministry to assess how to enhance the coordination and utilisation of Community Based Volunteers (CBVs). The effective coordination and utilisation of CBVs is viewed by MCDMCH a key way to deliver on their mandate, and strengthen existing community structures. There were estimates of the number of CBVs, but a lot of information about these CBVs, their work, skills, and organization was unknown. The Ministry felt therefore that it was necessary to partner with VSO and DFID to support the implementation of a skills audit of CBVs working across Zambia. In addition, a qualitative research in five sample districts was undertaken to better understand the linkages between traditional community structures in the areas of community development, mother and child health, and social welfare. The CBV Skills Audit Survey was implemented in 26 districts (2-3 per province) to represent adequately the variety of field realities in Zambia. Certain districts covered 2 districts, following the creation of new districts, bringing the total number of districts surveyed to 30. In January 2014, UNICEF recognised the opportunity to gather baseline data about the CBVs in the districts targeted as part of the Millennium Development Goal Initiative (MDGi) using the same research project. Four of the districts targeted by MDGi were already covered by the larger MCDMCH survey. UNICEF commissioned therefore an extension of the survey to cover seven additional districts in Copperbelt and Lusaka Province. The outcome of this extension was a set of reports that will enable the micro planning of activities in the 11 districts with regard to the MDGi. The survey was implemented in the supplementary districts following exactly the same methodology that had been used for the larger MCDMCH survey. The survey was rolled out using exclusively government staff. The VSO research team organised trainings in the provincial head towns to train 3 district officers from each selected district, 1 officer from each department (community development, mother and child health, social welfare). The district officers then selected and trained data collectors in their districts. The data collectors were chosen among government staff working closely with communities. The data collectors were posted in majority in health centres. They interviewed the CBVs based on a 4-page questionnaire which was pre-tested and reviewed by ministry representatives. The questionnaires were then given back to the district officers who were responsible for the data entry of these questionnaires into a provided data entry tool, and the submission of the data to the research team. The data collection lasted from November 2013 to April 2014 colliding therefore with the rainy season, which has effected to some degree the completeness of the data collected. The CBVs targeted under this survey were active local Zambian persons from the communities who were delivering services under programmes in the field of community development, mother and child health, and/or social welfare to their community on a voluntary (unpaid) basis. The results of the survey have been reviewed and interpreted by district officers from the selected districts in a workshop in May2013 in order to improve the understanding of the data patterns coming out of the survey.
The ministry of Community Development, Mother and Child Health (MCDMCH) –under took a research project to assess how to enhance the coordination and utilisation of Community Based Volunteers (CBVs)
Maternal and infant welfare--Zambia , MDGi CV Skills , Community based Volunteers--Zambia
Ministry of Health (2014). Community Based Volunteers Skills Audit Survey Report