From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Local News
In Sierra Leone, UNFPA Ends Training for 300 TBAs in South/North
By Mohamed Kabba
Sep 6, 2010, 13:41

As part of their agender in complementing governmentís effort in the area of maternal mortality reduction, teenage pregnancy, Gender Based Violence, HIV/AIDS prevention in the country, the United Nation Population Funds (UNFPA) has completed the training of three hundred (300) Traditional Birth Attendants in Bo and Bombali Districts respectively.

The training programe which is a pilot phase took place between  the 21st to 25th August in Bo District, and from the 26th to 31st August in Bombali District. The sessions were organised for stakeholders and TBAs on how to take forward the UNFPA Rural Community Empowerment within programe 18 of the UN joint mission, which is expected to be implemented between August and December.


At the two traing centres in Bo and Bombali, UNFPA Programe Manager for Gender and Advocacy Mrs. Isatu Kajue said they are working with traditional leaders and TBAs in respect of the Culture and Tradition of the country taking into consideration the fact that TBAs are community role models in the area of birth attendance. She said UNFPA is aware of the continuos increase in maternal mortality and teenage pregnacy in Sierra Leone for which they conduct regular training for TBAs and Primary Health Units Nurses to tackle the problem. She called on Stakeholders such as the ministry of Social Welfare and other line ministries and partners, including the TBAs  to ensure that they work as a team to efect the actuallisation of the implementation of this pilot phase programe which according to her if well managed by the TBAs and partners, will be extended to three yearts.

Addressing the Basic Facts of Antenatal Care during the Training the UNFPA Reproductive Health Officer Dr. Jaria Kabba stated that as TBAs they are expected to give the correct advice to their people at local level since they always receive all sorts of pregnant women.

Dr. Kabba advised all TBAs to stop birth attendance at their houses but rather take them to the nearest PHUs in their community and she also discouraged them from giving traditional medicines to pregnant women but rahter from the PHUs to ensured that no pregnant women died at giving birth but to deliver very safely.

The Gender Affairs officer for UNFPA Mrs. Nasu Fofana, urged the participants to make good use of the training noting that selecting their districts for the pilot program means they have to work for the success of the the program aims and objectives.

The training was climaxed with the formation of chiefdoms advocacy groups in all the 28 chiefdoms in BO and Bombali districts respectively, each headed by a UNFPA partner and one PHU nurse.   

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