Maternal, Newborn and Child Health in Mali


Total population (2016 est.): 17.5 Million
Probability of dying before reaching the age of five years, per 1,000 live births (2015): 115

Maternal Mortality Ratio, per 100,000 live births (2015 est.): 587


Funding from the Government of Canada, delivered through the Canadian Red Cross, is being used to support the Mali Red Cross and the Mali Ministry of Health to deliver health services to rural communities in the regions of Sikasso and Koulikoro, with a focus on improving mother, newborn and child health (MNCH).  This partnership also includes the Centre for Global Child Health (CGCH) at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto which is contributing to strengthening the monitoring and evaluation of the project, to enhance the effectiveness of the project and to demonstrate accountability. 
The 2016-2020 Mali MNCH project builds and expands upon the 2012-2015 MNCH project which supported the MOH to be able to employ, train and equip Community Health Workers who in turn assessed and treated 85,055 children for malaria, pneumonia, diarrhea and/or malnutrition in the course of the project. 

FUNDING (2016-2020 PROJECT):

Total project budget: $19.5M
CRC contribution: $3M
Government of Canada contribution: $16.5M


Watch short stories about our health projects in Mali


The Mali Red Cross is working with communities and Mali Ministry of Health to:

  • Deliver proven, high-impact, cost-effective interventions for treating cases of childhood illness and to prevent illness and deaths amongst mothers, newborns and children.
  • Train 441 Community Health Workers (CHWs) to assess, treat and refer children with malaria, diarrhea, acute respiratory infection and malnutrition, ensuring access to key health services for communities residing more than 5km away from a Health Centre.
  • Provide CHWs with essential drug kits to increase village-level access to life-saving medications.
  • Train Ministry of Health (MoH) staff on the supervision and coaching of CHWs and to ensure proper stock management.
  • Train Community Health Workers and Mali Red Cross volunteers to conduct health education activities, promoting key MNCH messages on malaria, diarrhea, pneumonia and malnutrition, neonatal and maternal care, through group sessions and home visits to local families with pregnant or recently-delivered mothers and/or children under 5.
  • Train health staff at Community Health Centres and Reference Hospitals for improved MNCH care, particularly of complicated cases of mother and newborn health.
  • Support Community Health Associations (ASACOs) to develop business plans so as to generate income for CHW salaries.
  • Work with all stakeholders, including communities, to develop plans for ensuring that CHW services can continue to be delivered even in the event of a public health emergency, natural disaster or humanitarian emergency.
  • Support the MOH to strengthen their capacity to collect and analyse data on mother and child health, and better utilize the findings to improve decision-making about MNCH services. 
Expected Results
Through the implementation of the project, it is expected that:
  • Rural populations will have access to village-level health services offered by trained Community Health Workers who can assess and treat children with malaria, diarrhea, acute respiratory infections and malnutrition.
  • Support provided to the Mali MOH to implement its MNCH and Integrated Community Case Management strategies will contribute to the reduction in mortality and morbidity for children under the age of five years old, as well as pregnant and recently-delivered women.
  • Increased community-level use of MNCH services and preventative practices, as well as treatment-seeking behaviours.
  • Increase used of CHW services, addressing the critical childhood illnesses: malaria, diarrhea, pneumonia and malnutrition.
  • Reinforced quality of MNCH services and treatments offered by Community Health Centres and Reference Hospitals.
  • Bolstered capacity of the MOH to collect, analyse and utilize MNCH data as part of its Health Management Information System.
  • Enhanced role of the Mali Red Cross in supporting the MoH to deliver community-level MNCH services.
The financial support of Canadians for MNCH programming is critical. Help us save lives today