William Zangazanga is married with four children. He is a farmer who grows rice, maize and cassava. He is also a champion for men’s knowledge of maternal health.
At the start of the Maternal and Newborn Health programme, William was among the men chosen to receive training, then pass it on to their own communities in rural Malawi, through one of 30 MAP groups.
The Men As Partners (MAP) scheme was set up to challenge men’s attitudes, values and behaviour that could have a negative impact on their health and welfare, as well as that of women and children. It encourages men to take action to prevent gender-based violence and promotes HIV/AIDS-related prevention, care and support.
In these communities, men are traditionally the heads of the household; the MAP scheme extends that responsibility to maternal and newborn health issues too. With their training on maternal health and childcare, William and his colleagues go door-to-door.
They encourage other men to prepare for the birth of their child, and explain the importance of accompanying their wives to antenatal and neonatal appointments – a difficult message when many households cannot afford to travel to distant clinics, except for delivery.
Although the programme has formally ended, William is continuing his door-to-door visits; he is confident of reaching all the households in his area.
“Men thought that traditional birth attendants had all the knowledge required to assist pregnant mothers, and as a result a lot of women have died due to birth complications, because the traditional birth attendants are not really specialists. The situation has changed and men are taking a leading role in maternal health”.
What does the supporting data tell us?
Below you can explore how the results changed from the Start to the End of the project, based upon the survey questions. Filter by community using highlighted areas of the map to view impact at a local level and by gender to see how answers from men differed from those of women.
If using a mobile, click on the full-screen option.
Read more about our maternal and neonatal health programme in Malawi.