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General News of Saturday, 16 February 2019

Source: GNA

OAFLAD launches five-year strategic plan to expand focus

First Lady, Mrs. Rebecca Akufo-Addo was at the OAFLAD 21st Ordinary General Assembly First Lady, Mrs. Rebecca Akufo-Addo was at the OAFLAD 21st Ordinary General Assembly

The Organisation of African First Ladies for Development (OAFLAD) has launched a new Five-Year Strategic Plan to expand its focus to reach more vulnerable people in society aside women and children with HIV and AIDS.

Other areas to be focused on are Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs), Reproductive, Maternal, New-born and Child Health (RMNCH), Gender Equality, Women and Youth Empowerment and Universal Health Coverage.

Other areas include Social security and Protection including persons with disabilities and lastly, Institutional capacity strengthening.

The strategic direction of the organization, which is from 2019 to 2023, is in line with its change of name from the Organisation of African First Ladies Against HIV and AIDS (OAFLA) to Organisation of African First Ladies for Development (OAFLAD).

Consequently, the Organisation had also changed its logo to correspond with its new vision and mission.

The new vision of OAFLAD is for a developed Africa and healthy and empowered children, youth and women.

Its mission is to contribute to the health and well-being of children, youth and women through advocacy, resource mobilization and strategic partnerships.

Mrs. Adjoavi Sika Kabore, the President of OAFLAD, at the launch of the new strategic direction in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, during the 21st Ordinary General Assembly, said over the years, OAFLAD had provided continent-wide leadership advocating for policy and social change and engage in resource mobilization at the global, continental and national levels.

She said the Organisation chalked successes in its activities with first ladies and other champions, working with Africa’s most vulnerable including women and children infected and affected by the AIDS epidemic.

She explained that at its 20th General Assembly, the organization decided to change its name to signal a new beginning with an expanded focus on contributing towards Africa’s overall development.

Mrs. Kabore, the First Lady of Burkina Faso, called on her fellow first ladies to take ownership of the new Strategic Plan by developing their own national plans out of it.

She said the first ladies were not obliged to deal with all the six thematic areas of the Plan but rather look at what was applicable to the needs of their people and implement those.

She said at the global and continental levels, the Strategic Plan was aligned to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Agenda 2063, respectively, saying the SDGs provided a framework for shifting the world economic development onto a path of inclusivity, sustainability and resilience.

The Agenda 2063, she said, provided a strategic framework for the socio-economic transformation of the African Continent over the next 30 years.

The objectives of OAFLAD are to strengthen the capacity of its members to support or implement efficient responses against HIV/AIDS, maternal, neonatal and child health and NCD’s.

It is also to mobilize partners and financial and material resources at the national, continental and international levels to facilitate the expansion of the response to HIV and AIDS, maternal, neonatal and child health and NCD’s.

The Organisation also aims to enhance efforts of member states in promoting gender equity and empowering women and youth and advocate for social inclusion of the vulnerable population in society.

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