In many parts of the world, social and institutional barriers prevent vulnerable people from accessing critical, life-saving care. Millions of preventable deaths occur every year, perhaps most tragically amongst mothers and infants less than one month old.
Concern Worldwide had undertaken initial research to identify these barriers, with a focus on marginalized populations and unheard voices. The organization identified a number of complex challenges, including the significant chasms between formal and informal health care providers. In the target contexts, women use informal providers almost exclusively, both because of cultural precedence and because of limited access to formal care. The poor quality of care offered by overworked health care providers, blockages by “gatekeepers to health” with beliefs at odds with modern medicine, and the physical distance to health services were also key challenges.
To address these issues, Concern solicited ideas from target beneficiaries through open-call competitions in three initial focus countries: India, Malawi, and Sierra Leone. While the winning suggestions showed promise, they required further validation, design, and refinement to ensure they could achieve their potential. Concern engaged Reboot’s support to iterate and incubate the ideas, in consultation with both local beneficiaries and global experts, to develop actionable, programmatic concepts.