New project strengthens social activism and the defense of right to health in Maputo

It is intended to promote a more active civil society, capable of influencing decision-makers in the construction of a public quality system and in the definition of health policies based on equity.

Social Determinants of Health

The project brings an innovative component of digital activism with the implementation of the first School of Activism in Health (SAH) that will provide specific training in the area.

The right to health is closely dependent on the existence of a public quality system sustained by health policies that promote equity. Ensuring this right and making it universal is a role that belongs not only to government officials, but also to civil society.

With this in mind, medicusmundi launched a new project, in partnership with N'weti, under which, over the next two years, efforts will be made to strengthen coordination, mobilization and advocacy capacity of civil society and Maputo's social movements, defending the right to health and a public quality system, based on a vision that considers the Social Determinants of Health as the main elements that explain the existing inequalities.

The intervention will focus on the city of Maputo, which concentrates approximately 40% of the entire urban population of Mozambique and where more than half of the population depends on the informal sector for their survival. In the capital of the country, 70% of households do not have sustainable economic income, and this reality is particularly expressive in families led by women. It is also among women that the illiteracy rate is higher, conditioning their ability to perceive health prevention and promotion messages, restricting their access to well-paid work and consequently compromising their housing conditions. Other gender factors are directly related to the role of women in society, namely their lesser ability to make decisions about their sexual and reproductive health. For all these reasons, the project pays special attention to the relationship between inequalities amidst men and women and health, especially with regard to violence against women.

In Maputo’s civil society there is no clear ideological position, in the context of defending the right to health and the agendas are established according to the interests of each donor. We are faced with the lack of civil society entities and social movements, national and international, with an active role in the defense of health as a right of all. It is, therefore, essential to help train activists with a strong ideological base and technical-scientific knowledge, with the appropriate communication tools to reach the recipients and with motivation and conviction.

In this sense, medicusmundi will work with civil society, national and international social movements, universities, research centers and the Municipal Council, promoting coordination between the platforms and the Commission for Social Determinants of Health, an intersectoral space that aims to become a participatory forum for the design and implementation of public health policies in the city.

Capacity building of civil society (training), public awareness and advocacy actions through participation in invited spaces of institutional participation are the three main pillars of this project, which brings an innovative component of digital activism with the implementation of the first School of Activism in Health (SAH) that will provide specific training in the area.

The project “Activism and Defense of the Right to Health in the City of Maputo” is implemented by medicusmundi with funding from the Municipality of Barcelona.

Published on 27/04/20

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