Diana Nambatya Nsubuga

Diana Nambatya Nsubuga - 2017 Nominee
Position: Country Manager
Organization: Global Health Corps
Current Location: Uganda
PHD in Public Health from Atlantic I University
Additional Degrees and Certifications:
Master of Science in Population and Reproductive Health, Makerere University - 2010
Post graduate diploma in Project Planning and Management, Uganda Management Institute - 2010
Bachelor of Science in Population Studies, Makerere University, Institute of Statistics and Applied Economics - 2005
Awards Received:
  • Award:
    2016 American Express Ngen Leadership Award
    Awarding Organization:
    Independent Sector and American Express
    Date Awarded:
    November 18, 2016
  • Award:
    Best Urban Farmer
    Awarding Organization:
    Netherlands Embassy and Vision Group
    Date Awarded:
    December 10, 2015
She advocates and integrates use of family in the various women projects which she started to help the women generate incomes, be economically, socially and financially independent hence being decision makers who can also manage their lives better . – ROSETTE NAVUGA, DEMOGRAPHER/STATISTICIAN at UGANDA BUREAU OF STATISTICS
Describe your contributions to and achievements in family planning.

At Global Health Corps, I am part of a great and vibrant team that mobilizes a global community of emerging leaders to build the movement for health equity. I lead these efforts in Uganda as a Country Manager where I oversee the country's program and operations, including the wellbeing and leadership development of young leaders placed there.

In my country, skilled attendance at birth is 34% and this explains the high maternal deaths of 438 per 100,000 women (USHS 2010/11). In my community skilled attendance at birth was even less than the national average. In my community, I have held lobby meetings with our council leaders to pass a bi-law that calls on all women to have skilled attendance at birth visa via giving birth at home or with a traditional birth attendant. One of the reasons that women give for not going for skilled attendance at birth is poverty. I have had trainings for several women and men on my farm and at heath centers on how they can be able to do farming and earn money. As an added session I teach about birth preparedness which includes the benefits in having skilled attendance at birth. With these sessions women are able to do farming, earn an additional income and hence be able to buy all hospital necessities including (mama kits) and have skilled attendance at birth. The bi-law was passed in 2012 and this has led to six times increase in the skilled attendance at birth in my community as reflected in the health center birth registers.

What sparked your passion for family planning?

Every year, 265,000 mothers in sub-Saharan Africa die in childbirth from preventable causes. In Uganda alone, approximately 6,000 women die every year due to pregnancy complications. Women bleed to death, they do not have access to antibiotics to prevent simple infections; they often do not have the option of a caesarean section when it is necessary. We can prevent these tragedies by providing women with prenatal care, skilled attendance at births, and emergency obstetric care.

Investing in family planning and reproductive health services not only is good for women's health and rights,[1] it makes economic sense—each $1 invested in contraceptive services will avoid between $1.7 and $4 in expenditures on maternal and newborn health, in addition to cost-savings in education, water sanitation, and immunization. Investing in family planning services reduces maternal mortality, improves child survival, promotes women's empowerment and contributes to poverty reduction. This sparked my passion for family planning.

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

Allow me to quote an article by Pickett Slater Harrington about our work in the community, "LEADERSHIP CROSSING GEOGRAPHIC, CULTURAL, AND SECTOR BOUNDARIES"

I take advantage of low cost technologies which impact on large population but which are inexpensive e.g. for children, these include immunization, bed nets for malaria (proven to avert deaths due to malaria in pregnancy which is one of the leading cause), exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months. I mobilize my community for these low cost effective technologies. During the trainings I hold I have a session on these and even when I get some of these from partners I distribute these to the community members with first priority to pregnant women, breastfeeding mothers.

I promote the Kangaroo Mother Care (KMC) where women who deliver premature babies put them close to their chests to keep them warm as soon as they are born because the biggest killer of such babies is hypothermia (low temperature in the baby) – This has been extremely effective in saving lives in my community.  What does it cost? Nothing!

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 have women groups that we continue to equip with knowledge on family planning / reproductive health integrated with health.

I will use the platform to learn best practices and also share experiences from the field.

I will use the $1000 grant to document the success stories in form of human interest pieces of the women groups including the activities they are involved in to advance FP/RH. We will have 4 stories documented in form of videos to be shared on social media. In addition, we will a number of collages that summarize the achievements of the women groups. I would also equip the youth corner at the farm where youth can meet and discuss, share ideas but also have educational materials and games.

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