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Ifg htalk research-advocacy

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Discussion of the role of advocacy in health research communication drawing on the experience of Healthlink Worldwide

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Ifg htalk research-advocacy

  1. 1. Health research and advocacy Creating change By Andrew Chetley Director of Programmes Healthlink Worldwide Irish Forum for Global Health September 2006
  2. 2. What is advocacy? Process to:  bring about change in the policies, laws and practices of influential individuals, groups and institutions (International HIV/AIDS Alliance, Zimbabwe, 2001)  influence policy and decision makers, to fight for social change, to transform public perceptions and attitudes, to modify behaviours, or to mobilise human and financial resources. (GAVI)  use information strategically to change policies that affect the lives of disadvantaged people. (BOND)  change attitudes, actions, policies and laws by influencing people and organisations with power, systems and structures at different levels for the betterment of people affected by the issue. (India HIV/AIDS Alliance, 2002)
  3. 3. What is advocacy? (2)  take action directed at changing the policies, positions and programmes of any type of institution. (SARA Project)  plead for, defend or recommend an idea before other people. (SARA Project)  speak up, draw attention to an issue, win the support of key constituencies in order to influence policies and spending, and bring about change. (WHO TB Programme) Advocacy is about influencing or changing relationships of power (World Bank)
  4. 4. Whose voices are heard?  Representation: speaking on behalf of the voiceless (for)  Mobilisation: encouraging others to speak with you (with)  Empowerment: supporting the voiceless to speak for themselves (by)
  5. 5. Whose agendas?  Northern agency; Southern citizen  PRSPs in Nicaragua  PRSPs in Uganda  Perspectives of health workers and community members  Rational drug use in the Philippines  Maternal health in Cambodia  TB patients in Tanzania  Tribal populations in India
  6. 6. Whose evidence counts?  CSOs provide useful health research on:  underlying determinants of health  health systems implementation and intervention studies  strategies for policy change.  Sanders, et al, 2004 Bull WHO
  7. 7. Using the evidence  Networking – increasing the chances and the conversations  Champions and connectors  Building influencing capacity – Ugandan Network of Researchers and Research Users  Building alliances – GEGA  Communication, integration, evaluation
  8. 8. Enabling voices to be heard  Healthlink works to improve the health and well-being of disadvantaged and vulnerable communities in developing countries.  It does this by strengthening the ability of vulnerable communities to identify and communicate effectively their own needs and priorities and by enabling their voices to be heard.
  9. 9. Healthlink helps communities:  participate in the development and delivery of community-based services  represent themselves and participate in public dialogue  strengthen their own capacity to communicate and be included in decision making processes  influence decision-makers directly.
  10. 10. Our programmes:  facilitate community and policy dialogues  develop innovative tools and techniques for strengthening communication and learning  support the development of local level communication strategies and information centres on major development issues  provide capacity development in health communication, advocacy, knowledge management and learning
  11. 11. More information  www.healthlink.org.uk  www.asksource.info (Source is an international information support centre which strengthens the management, use and impact of information on health, disability and other development topics.)