The Wellbeing Foundation Africa (WBFA) – a leading frontline African Maternal Newborn and Child Health (MNCH) and empowerment organization, and its Founder-President, Her Excellency, Mrs Toyin Saraki, facilitated equitable progress for women’s health, rights, education and empowerment in honour of International Women’s Day 2015 through a set of activities and advocacy call-outs, spanning three days (from Sunday 8th March to Tuesday, 10th March).
On Sunday, 8th March 2015, Her Excellency, Mrs Toyin Saraki reiterated her call-to-action for improved access to prompt and qualitative reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health (RMNCAH); the elimination of gender-based discrimination, abuse, neglect and violence; and improved gender-equality and fairness to women and girls. Also, on the same day, The Wellbeing Foundation Africa (WBFA), in collaboration with HEIT Solutions (curators of @EbolaAlert) hosted a two-hour twitter #EbolaMNChat, discussing the impacts of Ebola virus disease (EVD) on women’s health, especially highlighting lessons learnt and possible challenges in containing the spread of EVD to women and their families, in West Africa.
On Monday, 9th March 2015, Her Excellency, Mrs Toyin Saraki attended the #makeithappen lunch hosted by Her Excellency, Mrs Pirjo Suomela-Chowdhury, Finland’s Ambassador to Nigeria, where key actions for progress of women’s and girls’ education, rights and empowerment were shared. Other attendees included Country heads of UNFPA, UN Women, Diplomatic Mission Ambassadors to Nigeria, from Jamaica, Mali, Bosnia-Herzegovnia, etc. Others included Nigerian government ministers and representatives such as Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala (Minister of Finance) and Viola Onwuliru (Minister of State for Education), as well as other staff from from the Ministry of Water Resources and the National Agency for the Prohibition of Traffic in Persons and Other Related Matters (NAPTIP).
Also on the evening of Monday, 9th March 2015, Her Excellency, Mrs Toyin Saraki led the teams of Alaafia Kwara Women’s Forum and Joint Toyin Groups (JTG) to pay a condolence visit to Hajia (Mrs) Kudirat Lawal, leader of JTG, who recently lost her beloved husband. During this visit, Her Excellency, Mrs Toyin Saraki assured Mrs Kudirat Lawal that “widowhood is painful, but with the Grace of the Almighty God, you are not alone; we shall always be there for you and your children, to fulfil your late husband’s legacies.”
Following the Wellbeing Foundation Africa’s initial announcement launching its innovative Alaafia Universal Health Coverage Scheme (AUHCS) on International Women’s Day, the Foundation was paid a courtesy call by PharmAccess Foundation (from The Netherlands); Hygeia Community Health Care; the Kwara State Ministry of Health; and Boston Consulting Group (BCG, from both The Netherlands and Switzerland) on the 10th of March 2015.
The AUHCS will provide funding for an additional 4,800 beneficiaries of the Kwara State Community Health Insurance Scheme, every year, including pregnant women; children under the age of five years old; adolescent girls; persons living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA); and the elderly. The announcement of the AUHCS by Her Excellency, Mrs Toyin Saraki was received with excitement and gratitude by all present, and was adjudged as an unprecedented contribution to healthcare coverage by any CSO or NGO in Africa.
While International Women’s Day is celebrated once a year, the Wellbeing Foundation Africa and its leadership urges the global development community to use each day to make a difference in women’s rights, health and empowerment.
The Wellbeing Foundation Africa