Published 29 August 2019 in News
Focus 2030 is supporting the "Carnets de santé (Handbook for Health) in Africa" project, run by Global Health Advocates France (GHA), an advocacy NGO working in France and in Brussels to strengthen support for health and illness caused by poverty in developing countries.
France: a leader in global health?
A global public good, a pillar of human capital and a vector for peace and stability, health is one of the priority sectors for French development policy. France is historically a leading actor in global health, with a strong political commitment in the fight against global pandemics, sexual and reproductive health and rights, children’s health, and universal health cover. And yet, despite this glowing track record, the repeated cuts in recent years to France’s development aid have had a direct impact on the ambition and results of its global health investments.
2019 is a pivotal year for global health given the theme of inequality of the French G7 Presidency and the replenishment conference for the Global Fund hosted in Lyon in October 2019.
The "Carnets de santé (Handbook for Health) in Africa" project, run jointly by GHA and the French Presidential Council for Africa, showcases some of the most innovative African initiatives for health, in order to show that health care and access is possible when the community, and local and international actors, come together.
The project demonstrates in particular how official development assistance, particularly contributions made to the multilateral health development funds, can make all the difference to vulnerable communities in Africa.
GHA have chosen to look at innovation, progress and positive examples in this project, to counter the too-frequent image of Africa as the long-suffering continent. But of course challenges remain - whether it is about access to basic services, qualified personnel, or infrastructure. The project takes examples of what works, and offers a reminder of the importance of continued - and increased - investment in health by the international community in the coming years.
The "Carnets de santé (Handbook for Health) in Africa", project, financed by Focus 2030 in 2019, has three main objectives:
Field trips to meet the women and men who make a difference. For example...
Field Trip #1: In Ethiopia and Rwanda, a discovery of drones delivering essential medicines, community agents, latest radiotherapy techniques and a university dedicated to global health.
Field Trip #2: In Senegal and Guinée: a series where the plot revolves around young people’s health, a secure medical room to isolate new diseases, self-diagnosis for HIV, and how big data can help conserve vaccinations.
Field Trip #3: In Botswana and South Africa: vending machines for medicine, leadership sessions for adolescents, and peer-to-peer education for drug users.
Given the scale of the challenge of global health access or crises, it can be difficult to know where to start. This project showcases what works across the African continent, providing a series of recommendations for French global health policy to show how targeted and appropriate investment can support the health needs and efforts of local actors and communities.
A dedicated website
Through a dedicated website and a series of videos and reports, the project provides a space for the public to "visit" Africa, and better understand challenges and solutions around health issues. It is a platform for the stories and work of everyday women and men, who explain how and why global health investment is essential to them, but also to everyone.
This is of course in line with the aims of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a framework of 17 Goals which aim to eradicate poverty and bulle equal, stable and just societies for all - including equal access to quality healthcare and treatment. The SDGs are at the heart of Focus 2030’s mission, and we are proud partners of this excellent project alongside GHA and the French Presidential Council for Africa.