The Population, Health, and Environment (PHE) Integration Activity in Madagascar is a one-year project implemented by JSI Research & Training Institute Inc. under the USAID Community Capacity for Health Program, locally known as Mahefa Miaraka with support from Advancing Partners and Communities.
The PHE Integration Activity is based on the concept that integrated PHE programs can achieve greater results than vertical programs. Integrated programs increase community buy-in, reinforce messages, and simultaneously address multiple development challenges and behavioral changes in one sector that impact another sector.
The project has partnered with two local Malagasy NGOs and one international NGO to strengthen innovative PHE models and replicate them in fragile ecological zones. The project’s collaboration with the local NGO, Ny Tanintsika (‘Our Land’), to integrate of family health interventions into existing work on sustainable management of natural resources and poverty reduction is one example of this replication. In October 2018, the project conducted a training for district health office and health center staff who will in turn train and support 17 community health volunteers who will provide family planning and child health services in communities living in the Ambositra-Vondrozo Forest Corridor, a humid rainforest containing over 800 species of plants and 300 species of animals, in central eastern Madagascar.
The project works in close collaboration with the Working Group on Health and the Environment (GTSE) and the members of the Population Health Environment Network (PHEN), an organization of non-governmental organizations. In 2018, the project conducted a series of workshops to identify common PHE indicators and methods used among network members in order to develop a common indicator dashboard. These common indicators draw from MCH, family planning, agriculture, resource management (terrestrial and marine), WASH, income generation, and integration.