Project 4

Title: Exploration of Knowledge and Skills Development among Community Health Workers in Rwanda


  • Schadrack Ngabonziza
  • Lorie Donelle
  • Jodi Hall
  • Yolanda Babenko-Mould
  • David Tumussime


Electronic Link: Not yet available

Community Health Workers (CHWs) are individuals who are selected and trained to provide healthcare services in the community. To be effective, they need ongoing training opportunities to gain knowledge and skills to perform their tasks. This study used descriptive qualitative methods to explore how ASM-CHWs working in select regions of Rwanda gained and enhanced their knowledge and skills to support maternal and newborn health care. Thematic analysis was used to analyze data from 110 ASM-CHWs and ten supervisors of CHWs. The analysis yielded two main themes. 1) Formalized training among CHWs, which included the subthemes of didactic training workshops, supervision, and monthly meetings. 2) Informalized training, with subthemes of informal peer to peer mentorship, learning as an ongoing process, moving toward formalized peer to peer mentorship model with its benefits, way to move forward, and challenges of peer to peer mentorship model. Adequate training of CHWs is crucial to the success of the program. However, training of CHWs was hampered by the unavailability of funds. Thus, peer to peer formal mentorship could serve as a learning strategy to reinforce the training of CHWs.

Keywords: Community health worker, training strategies