What are the barriers to attendance to the Maternal Newborn and Child Health Week (MNCHW) and how can these be reduced?

Maternal Newborn and Child Health Week (MNCHW) was launched in Nigeria in 2009 as a bi-annual campaign-style programme designed to deliver key child and maternal health interventions and to revitalise health care systems. Support to strengthen this programme, in the five northern Nigerian States of Katsina, Jigawa, Kebbi, Zamfara and Yobe, is being provided by the UK Department for International Development (DFID) through its 6-year programme – Working for Improving Nutrition in Northern Nigeria (WINNN). This programme is being implemented by Save the Children International (SCI) and Action Against Hunger (Action Contre la Faim, ACF) in partnership with the five state governments. WINNN focuses on strengthening three key interventions within MNCHW, which are supplementation of Vitamin A and deworming (Albendazole), for children 6-59 months of ages, and supplementation of iron-folate for pregnant women. However, a key challenge, identified by WINNN for MNCHW programme success, has been low rates of MNCHW attendance. This document reports on the operations research undertaken to understand the barriers to MNCHW attendance and how to strengthen social mobilisation to improve it.