Catherine Ndungu

Catherine Ndungu - 2019 Nominee
Position: Communications Manager
Organization: Jhpiego
Current Location: Kenya -Nairobi
Masters from The Hague University of Applied Sciences
Additional Degrees and Certifications:
Bachelor of Arts, Communications
75 Public Votes Reached!
Catherine is a brilliant creative thinker, leading user-centered design across Jhpiego adolescent and adult FP programming, developing compelling media, demand generation, and service delivery information, education and communication materials. – Radha Karnad, Regional Program Advisor at Jhpiego
Describe your contributions to and achievements in family planning.

I have been engaged in family planning for the last five years. As a communication specialist I have sought to deeply understand how information access can be used to drive up demand for contraceptive for women and couples. As such, I have developed focused comprehensive approaches to information access and delivery for sexual reproductive health and family planning for adolescent and young women in urban and rural settings. Under the Brighter Future project, I was actively involved in the design of the project’s life planning booklet called Funguo, translated from Swahili as the “Key,” that helps young people to unlock their future by preventing early pregnancies through family planning. The Funguo tools and processes were also developed into an android-based game called Game Changers.

What sparked your passion for family planning?

I met Otieno and his wife Lisa in 2014, they had 12 children and she was 5 months pregnant with the 13th child. One of the biggest barriers for the couple was lack of access to credible information on family planning. Since then, I have sought deeply understand and empathize with target audiences to uncover human behaviors and attitudes ultimately, creating communication products that helps bridge the gap between intention and action.

Give one or two examples of how you display leadership in your family planning work.:

Enhancing information access has been an area of focus and leadership for me. Knowledge on contraceptives does not always lead to changes in attitudes and behaviors. Therefore, I have sought to deeply understand attitudes, channels, influence and behavior as a means of tapping into the genius of the user to design ways in which we can provide information and tailor programming solutions as informed by the users themselves.

If you are named a winner of 120 under 40, how will you use this new platform and the $1000 grant to advance your work? :

I will use this platform to empower women and couples with information on their right to contraceptive access and the benefits of choice. Additionally, I would like to delve deeper to understand how interpersonal communication, trust and credibility affect contraceptive uptake and how best we can package contraceptive information to ensure that those most in need have access to contraceptives.

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