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Social Capacity Mapping: The Science of Service

GHA aims to move beyond identifying the limitations of existing programs to actually developing innovative new programs that avoid past mistakes and build on new evidence.

We are pioneers in developing interventions that achieve long-term, sustainable impact through the increased engagement, participation and leadership of served communities.

Many experts have noted that one key drawback to existing global health interventions is the gap between those served by interventions and the true stakeholders in those programs: donors, leaders, and implementers—largely based in wealthy countries or in national capitals. While this is perhaps a necessary situation for the moment, breakthrough innovations in information technology, connectivity, enterprise and finance offer the possibility of a rapid transformation of this state of affairs through the very actions of the health system.

Since 2007, Global Health Affairs has maintained the following service research partnerships in sustainable health systems development and social technology.

New Delhi, India

A Classroom in New Delhi

We work with New Concept Information Systems, a Delhi-based social research and communications organization, to revolutionize the role of the community health worker (CHW) in South Delhi slums.

Past students conducted needs assessments and facility surveys aimed at arming CHWs with the knowledge to provide patients with evidence-based referrals.

In summer 2011, Lauren Evans, Helena Minchew and Alyssa Om'Iniabohs designed a CHW curriculum and piloted peer survey methods.

In summer 2012, Majo Aldana and Greg Maly implemented a M&E system to track maternal health using community based technology solutions and maps in the slum of Jasola in Delhi, India. Check out Majo's blog and Greg's blog to learn more about their experiences working in Jasola in New Delhi, India. 

Nairobi, Kenya

Showing off our artist's work on a water bucket.

This program is piloting interventions in hygiene, social enterprise, peer education and governance to address the need for sustainable sanitation in Kibera—one of the world's most densely populated slums.

In summer 2011, Kelly Fenson-Hood, Jean-Pierre Larroque, Fred Oelsner and Leah Scandurra evaluated the impact of eight water and sanitation facilities, conducted a behavior-change campaign and evaluated its efficacy.

In summer 2012, Jess Harig, Ben Harris, Ellen Kaufman and Nathan Raymond conduct further data collection, analyze existing data, strengthen governance solutions and explore a partnership with uShahidi. They worked with 8 bathroom facilities in Kibera and worked to mobilize the community through hygiene and sanitation education and facility and business management. 

Check out Jess' blog and Ellen's blog to learn more about their experiences working for Global WASHES in Kibera, Kenya. 

Grassroots Jerusalem

Working in Jerusalem

We work with Grassroots Jerusalem on an "Evolving Map" of community needs, capabilities and organizations that serve as a platform for improving the efficacy, collaboration, and sustainability of development and human rights organizations.

In summer 2011, five students carried out community data collection, participatory mapping and even hip-hop video production.

In summer 2012, students will work at the new Grassroots Jerusalem offices and in the field, and explore new opportunities in gender, maternal and mental health.