AFP Workshop Fosters Expansion of SMART Advocacy in India, Bangladesh, and The Philippines

Advance Family Planning (AFP) held a diffusion workshop on June 19-23rd in Uttarakhand, India—the first in a series to be held in different regions where AFP works. The five-day workshop aimed to build facilitation skills in applying AFP’s SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-bound) advocacy approach as well as provide participants with the opportunity to develop a SMART advocacy objective to implement.

Twenty-five family planning and reproductive health advocates from seven AFP partner organizations in Bangladesh, India, and the Philippines attended the workshop, which was led by master trainers from the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs, Jhpiego India, and AFP. Jhpiego India led workshop planning and logistics support.

The workshop introduced AFP’s 9-step SMART process, imparted facilitation techniques, and gave participants— some of whom were exposed to AFP SMART for the first time—the opportunity to practice new skills in small groups. Participants’ objectives spanned a variety of family planning issues from improving provider training and quality of care to increasing budgets for family planning at the subnational level.

Following the workshop, AFP partners will incorporate these objectives into their existing advocacy efforts. In addition, the newly-developed cadre of master facilitators will further diffuse the AFP SMART approach among other organizations in India through a second workshop planned for early September 2017.

As part of its supplemental funding, the AFP initiative is working to scale up application of its SMART approach, a ground-tested advocacy tool that helps advocates and their allies focus attention on opportunities for action and develop near-term advocacy strategies to help achieve broad, long-term goals, such as the Family Planning 2020 goal. The AFP SMART approach has transformed the way family planning champions maximize their time and resources to effectively persuade those in power to take action. Within the AFP initiative, the approach has led to more than 450 advocacy wins in 19 countries.

Photo courtesy of Jhpiego - India