CHI Marks a Decade of Transformative Healthcare and Social Services in Liberia

Marshall Road, Lower Margibi – The Community Healthcare Initiative (CHI), founded in 2014, has been at the forefront of providing healthcare and social services to women and girls in remote and underserved communities across Liberia. Celebrating its 10th anniversary, CHI has been instrumental in promoting socio-economic development, with a particular emphasis on comprehensive sexual and reproductive health rights services, across fourteen of Liberia’s 15 counties.

By Francis G. Boayue

On Thursday, February 29, 2024, CHI commemorated its 10th year of establishment, marking a decade of significant impact, progress, and partnerships. The event also honored sponsors, partners, and staff for their unwavering support over the past decade.

Mrs. Naomi Tulay-Solanke, the Executive Director of CHI, reflected on the organization’s journey, highlighting its humble beginnings and the remarkable growth it has achieved. “What started as a local fundraising effort, selling tea from the back of my car, has blossomed into an organization with three offices and clinics in Montserrado, Margibi, and Gbapolu counties, employing more than 52 individuals,” Mrs. Solanke shared.

Initially, CHI’s efforts were aimed at responding to the Ebola outbreak in Liberia, with a focus on supporting schools to ensure the safety of children during the crisis. This initiative led to a partnership with ActionAid Liberia, marking the beginning of CHI’s expansion to serve 14 of Liberia’s 15 counties.

Under Mrs. Solanke’s leadership, CHI has evolved into a feminist and women’s rights organization, dedicated to women’s empowerment and advocating for policy reforms, youth engagement, access to justice, and building resilient communities through a human rights-based approach.

“CHI has led over one thousand GBV awareness campaigns, built the capacity of five hundred women in livelihood skills, established over fifty VSLA clubs in communities, and provided SRHR services to fifteen thousand individuals,” Mrs. Solanke stated. The organization has also made significant contributions to policy reforms, including the domestic violence law, decent work bill, and public health law.

Looking ahead, CHI aims to focus on movement building, youth engagement and leadership, and evidence-based research and advocacy over the next decade.

Madam Onike Gooding-Freeman, the Board Chair of CHI, expressed gratitude to partners such as ActionAid, RFSU, Global Fund for Children, Dignity, Action Against Hunger, SAAF, and others for their support. She also emphasized the importance of safe abortion care, advocating for the passage of public health law to address teenage pregnancy, unwanted pregnancy, and pregnancy-related deaths in Liberia.

Reflecting on CHI’s success story, it’s clear that supporting local civil society organizations (CSOs) with the necessary resources can lead to sustainable community development and resilience. CHI’s decade-long journey is a testament to the power of localization and the impactful change it can bring to communities in need.

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