The Power of Community Health Volunteers at Community Level

Categories: Care.

Community Health Volunteers are key persons in the delivery of palliative care services in Kenya.

Ongata Ngong Palliative Care Community (ONPACC) is a community based palliative care provider mainly supporting the home care services and community awareness.

ONPACC trains and works closely with Community health volunteers in ensuring the community members are reached and cared for.  The main aim is offering services at home/community, tracing clients and empowering the community health volunteers.

Community Health Volunteers (CHVs) help palliative care health care providers to connect community members to available services and resources.

They are central player  benefiting  palliative care providers, individual clients and community.

They are members of the communities and understand their own community culture hence helps palliative care providers develop trust, relationship with patient during home healthcare services to deliver services that are culturally appropriate.

CHVs have greatly supported Ongata Ngong Palliative Care Community (ONPACC) to serve the community and also work as liaison between the patients, families and Organization. They have strengthened the relationship between ONPACC and Kajiado west county healthcare and they offer social support.

Palliative care services are minimal in rural Kenya hence CHVs reaches on palliative healthcare providers, refers clients for management and receive them back for support at home hence giving back to the community.

CHVs are key persons in our country by helping overcome the increasing  demand  for palliative health care service and the shortage of formal health providers. They help in tracing clients who have defaulted and do follow-up on drug adherence.

Points learnt from trained palliative care volunteers:

  • Network is very important
  • Social emotional support by CHVs tend to improve well-being.
  • Human being are social and ready to support out.
  • Regular support through training and tools improvement, CHVs does good work.

Way forward

  • Support your community health volunteers
  • Listen, Educate and offer feedback
  • Network with other health care providers
  • Give CHVs time to inform, educate and give feedback
  • Support CHVs social/emotional on continues bases.

For more information please go to:

Written by Stella Rithara- Palliative care nurse/Educator

Founder and Director- ONPACC

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